The Federal Communications Commission gave 60 days for the subsidiary of the state company of the Asian country to suspend its operations in North American territory. They claim that it provided espionage opportunities to Beijing.
The US regulatory authorities decided to expel from their market a division of China Telecom, one of the three major Chinese state operators and which they consider a national security threat, amid growing tensions with Beijing.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) vote orders Beijing-controlled China Telecom Americas to suspend service in 60 days, ending a nearly 20-year operation in the United States and undoubtedly escalating tensions between the superpowers. Economic.
Chinese government ownership and control of the company poses significant national security and law enforcement risks, “by providing opportunities for Beijing to access, store, interrupt and divert US communications, thereby, in turn, it would allow them to participate in espionage or other harmful activities against the United States,” the FCC said in a statement.
China Telecom had faced turmoil in the United States for years, particularly during the recent presidency of Donald Trump, when the company was delisted from the New York Stock Exchange along with state-owned telecommunications firms China Mobile and China Unicom after an executive order from the Republican president.
In April 2020, the US Department of Justice threatened to end China Telecom’s US deals citing “substantial and unacceptable national security risks .” In addition, the conduct and communications of US government agencies “demonstrate a lack of honesty, trustworthiness, and reliability,” the FCC said at the time without giving details.
The Chinese government has said it will take steps to protect its companies. However, it has not yet announced retaliation for its plight in the US market.
US regulators have also cracked down on other Chinese telecommunications companies. The Trump administration began an aggressive campaign in 2018 to disrupt Huawei’s global ambitions, making it impossible for the tech giant to access critical components and banning it from using Google’s Android services.
The operators are on a US government blacklist of entities that the Pentagon considers involved in military development. Others are state-owned oil companies, video processors and technology providers, construction companies, aerospace, shipping, and nuclear power equipment firms.