HUAWEI'S CURRENT persona-non-grata status in the US is causing problems across the board, and now just for Huawei itself.
Qualcomm and Intel are amongst a group of chipmakers based in the USA who have started pressing authorities to ease up on the ban fearing it could cost a combined total running into tens of billions of pounds.
Reuters reports that Intel and Xilinx attended a meeting with the US Commerce Department in May to discuss the ban, whilst Qualcomm has said to be lobbying separately, in moves facilitated by the Semiconductor Industry Association.
"This isn't about helping Huawei. It's about preventing harm to American companies," said an anonymous spokesperson for one of the firms, and yielding a "well… duh!" from this publication.
The firms argue that the vast majority of parts used by Chinese firms are commonly available and as such a far smaller security risk that Huawei's bespoke 5G infrastructure equipment.
Estimates put the total spent by Huawei on US products last year as $11bn, a mere 15 per cent of the total spend, but when you're dealing in billions, there are no small numbers. Broadcom hasn't been part of the negotiations but is expected to face $2bn losses.
It is understood that Google has also lobbied for a relaxation of the rules, which would allow them to continue servicing Android phones present and future.
Huawei itself hasn't commented, but it is understood that they don't feel there are any channels open to them. It is not believed that there has been any direct dialogue between Huawei and the US Government since the ban came in over a month ago.
At present, US companies are able to trade under a 90-day licence designed to allow continuity, but with no sign of the US-China trade war slowing down, it is still unclear what will happen after this licence expires in August.
The White House has already hinted that a US-China trade deal could including negotiations over Huawei, thus more-or-less putting to bed any suggestion that this was ever really about security. μ
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