The Trump administration could be on the verge of signing an executive order prohibiting the sale of products made by China’s Huawei and ZTE, sources told Reuters, in what would be the US latest sign of pushback against growing Chinese influence in the telecoms space.
The US has long held that the two companies are agents of the Chinese government and are worried that adoption of their technology could threaten national security. In August, Trump signed an order that banned product sales to government bodies.
American carriers are looking to embrace next generation 5G technology, in which China is a world leading provider. Both Huawei and ZTE have repeatedly denied have ties to Beijing.
While larger carriers are in a position to cut ties with the Chinese firms, Reuters notes that smaller, rural US carriers, which have turned to China for cheaper products, may be less willing to replace their equipment with homegrown alternatives.