Trump’s Huawei reversal is ‘not a general amnesty’ – WH

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President Donald Trump’s decision to allow US companies to sell parts to Huawei is a climbdown in his policies toward China, but doesn’t exclude the firm from the US’ blacklist, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said.

Trump announced a relaxation on his blacklisting of the Chinese telecoms giant on Saturday, after meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping at the G20 summit in Osaka, Japan. “US companies can sell their equipment to Huawei,” he told reporters, providing that equipment poses no “great national emergency problem.”

Trump’s backtracking was criticized by some commenters, but Kudlow appeared on Fox News Sunday to assure China hawks that the Trump administration is not letting Huawei – which it has accused of spying for the Chinese government – off the hook.

“This is not a general amnesty, if you will,” he said. “Huawei will remain on the so-called Entity List where there are serious export controls and in national security inferences or suggestions there won’t be any licenses [awarded].”

Following Saturday’s announcement, Trump was panned from both sides of the political aisle for backpedaling. “If President Trump has in fact bargained away the recent restrictions on Huawei, then we will have to get those restrictions put back in place through legislation,” tweeted Senator Marco Rubio (R-Florida).

“Huawei is one of few potent levers we have to make China play fair on trade. If President Donald Trump backs off, as it appears he is doing, it will dramatically undercut our ability to change China’s unfair trades practices,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-New York) stated.

Though Trump was keen to point out that the relaxation of the Huawei ban came with an agreement from China to purchase “large amounts” of US agricultural produce, the president had also come under intense pressure from American tech firms since the ban was implemented last month. Chipmakers Intel, Qualcomm, Broadcom and Xilinx were all affected by the ban, as was Google, whose Android operating system is used by Huawei smartphones.

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It remains unclear whether Huawei will be allowed to sell its products in the US. 

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