The US government has imposed more restrictions on Chinese tech giant Huawei, as part of its efforts to limit the company's access to commercial computer chips.
The US Commerce Department said that it was expanding its Foreign Direct Product Rule, 'which will prevent Huawei from circumventing US law through alternative chip production and provision of off-the-shelf (OTS) chips produced with tools acquired from the United States.'
The government has also added 38 Huawei affiliates to its 'Entity List' of companies that are considered to pose threats to the national security and are prohibited from receiving sensitive technologies from US firms. With addition of these new affiliates, the total number of companies on the list has now gone up to 152.
The government further said that it has "allowed Huawei's Temporary General License (TGL) to expire." It argued that affected Huawei customers were given ample time to migrate to alternative sources of software, technology and equipment and "now that time is up."
The Trump administration's new measures build on earlier restrictions declared in May, which aimed to cut the ability of the Chinese firm to purchase computer chips and other semiconductors produced using American technologies.
Huawei has "continuously tried to evade" those restrictions by using technology supplied by third parties, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said on Monday.
He added that the measures announced in May have not been enough to ease the government's concerns about the threat Huawei poses to national security.
"As we have restricted its access to US technology, Huawei and its affiliates have worked through third parties to harness US technology in a manner that undermines US national security and foreign policy interests. This multi-pronged action demonstrates our continuing commitment to impede Huawei's ability to do so," Ross said.
The new restrictions, announced on Monday, come amid rising economic and political tensions between the two countries.
The Trump administration has accused Huawei of assisting Chinese intelligence services in conducting spying operations via critical infrastructure - an allegation that Huawei has always denied - and the US sanctions have begun to impact Huawei's business.
Earlier this month, Richard Yu Chengdong, Huawei's CEO of Consumer Business Unit, said that the company can no longer produce advanced Kirin chips due to sanctions.
"From September 15th onward, our flagship Kirin processors cannot be produced.
"Our AI-powered chips also cannot be processed. This is a huge loss for us. Huawei's mobile phones have no chip supply, which makes our shipment volume this year a little less than [the] 240 million units [shipped last year]," he stated.
The standoff between China and the US has also enveloped the popular Chinese app TikTok and messaging service WeChat, both of which face a ban in the US starting in September.
Earlier this month, President Donald Trump signed two executive orders, curtailing US transactions with TikTok and WeChat.
The orders prohibit US residents from doing business with the two apps, beginning next month.
The order against TikTok also said that the US 'must take aggressive action against the owners of TikTok to protect our national security'.
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