USA Approves Qualcomm, Despite Sanctions, to Sell 4G Chips to Huawei

Reuters reports that Qualcomm has obtained permission to sell 4G mobile chips to Huawei from the United States.

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The U.S. approves Qualcomm to sell Huawei 4G chips despite sanctions. PHOTO via @ICTNEWS

Reuters reports that Qualcomm has obtained permission to sell 4G mobile chips to Huawei from the United States, an exception to the Trump administration’s ban on doing business with the Chinese company.

  • The US approves Qualcomm to sell Huawei 4G chips, despite sanctions.
  • Huawei became the world’s largest smartphone seller in July due to strong sales in China.
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Qualcomm did not specify which products were not allowed to be sold to Hawaii but told Reuters they were related to mobile devices.

In May 2019, the White House issued an executive order banning US companies from doing business with Chinese companies such as Hawaii due to national security concerns.

In May of this year, the Department of Commerce tightened restrictions on any foreign semiconductor manufacturers requiring licenses from the United States if they used U.S. equipment or technology to manufacture chips for the Hawaiian company.

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In September, the United States began obtaining licenses to sell chips to foreign semiconductor manufacturers — although not designed for Hawaii specifications — for use by a Chinese company.

Hawaii said it would go without processor chips in August due to the US sanctions. Richard Yu, CEO of the Huawei Consumer Business Division, said at the time that “this year may be the last generation of high-end chips in Hawaii Kirin.”

Huawei became the world’s largest smartphone seller in July due to strong sales in China, despite sanctions from the United States. But it lost first place to Samsung last month; Hawaii exports fell 24 per cent year-on-year in October, while Samsung exports increased 47 per cent.

The Qualcomm license to sell to Huawei includes 4G chips, Reuters specifications only, and it is unclear whether its license applies to 5G chips, which will be added to the new devices.

What does Qualcomm do?

Qualcomm is a multinational company known for the design and production of semiconductors and wireless products.

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Qualcomm’s business units consist of three main business units — Qualcomm CDMA Technologies (QCT), Qualcomm Technology Licensing (QTL) and Qualcomm Strategic Initiatives (QSI).

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