President Trump’s plans to save jobs at troubled Chinese phone giant ZTE have been thrown into jeopardy after intervention from top US politicians.
Senior lawmakers have hit back after Trump pledged to intervene after ZTE said it would be suspending operations following a US blocking ban issued on worries of national security.
ZTE was blocked from doing business in the US following accusations it had flouted a previous order on doing business with Iran and North Korea.
The firm had been the fourth-largest smartphone manufacturer in the US before the ban, which prevented ZTE from importing and licensing American technology and ideas.
The company was also forced to pay a $1.2 billion fine, fired four senior employees and hit 35 others with wage and bonus restrictions.
According to Reuters, the Trump administration is considering easing the restrictions on ZTE in return for China removing tariffs on a number of US-made goods, including pork and fruit.
However this has not gone down well with senior politicians, many of whom are calling out the Trump administration for putting deals above issues of national security.
Republican Senator Marco Rubio said that he hoped, “the administration does not move forward on this supposed deal I keep reading about,” and 32 Senate Democrats have signed a letter accusing the President of putting Chinese interests ahead of US jobs and national security.
President Trump also recently tweeted that he was working with Chinese head of state Xi Jinping to find a solution to the issue.
The UK Government also revealed concerns about ZTE, with the National Cybersecurity Centre (NCSC) issuing a warning to UK telcos urging them not to use equipment from the company