President Joe Biden of the United States has approved legislation prohibiting corporations deemed a security danger from obtaining new telecommunications equipment licenses.
According to the Secure Equipment Act, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is no longer required to consider petitions from firms that have been deemed a danger.
It means Huawei, ZTE, and three other Chinese companies’ equipment can’t be utilized in US telecommunications networks.
Senators from all parties voted in favor of the bill.
It was unanimously approved by the Senate on October 28th, after passing with 420 votes in favor and only four votes against in the House of Representatives.
Under a 2019 rule meant to defend US communications networks, the FCC announced in March that it had designated five Chinese corporations that presented a national security concern.
Huawei, ZTE, Hytera Communications Corp, Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Co, and Zhejiang Dahua Technology Co were all named.
The FCC, on the other hand, was not obligated to reject the businesses’ petitions to utilize their technology in US networks.
Since 2018, the FCC has granted more over 3,000 Huawei applications, according to Commissioner Brendan Carr.
“Helping to ensure that unsecure hardware from corporations like Huawei and ZTE can no longer be introduced into America’s communications networks,” he said of the Secure Equipment Act.
The crackdown has been criticized by China.
“The US continues to misuse national security and state power to restrict Chinese firms, despite the lack of proof,” Zhao Lijian, a spokeswoman for China’s foreign ministry, said in June.
The FCC has also proposed new regulations that would allow it to withdraw previously awarded licenses.
The FCC decided last month to deny China Telecom’s US subsidiary license to operate in the US, citing national security concerns.
Next week, President Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping are slated to meet virtually.