May 25, 2018

Brown Statement On Reported Agreement Between The Trump Administration And ZTE

 WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) – ranking member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs – released the following statement on a reported tentative deal reached between the Trump administration and Chinese telecom giant ZTE to drop the bar to the company’s doing business with the U.S. put in place just a month ago. This week, the Senate Banking Committee voted overwhelmingly to block such a deal, and the House of Representatives voted to impose new restrictions related to ZTE.

“We penalized this Chinese telecom giant for a reason – it violated US sanctions against Iran and North Korea and then repeatedly lied about it.  On a bipartisan basis, Congress has urged the Administration to stick to its guns.  Instead, the Administration appears to be backing down in order to save Chinese jobs.  That’s wrong, for our national security and for our economic interests, too.”

Background: When Commerce Secretary Ross imposed renewed penalties on ZTE in April he noted: “ZTE made false statements to the U.S. Government when they were originally caught and put on the Entity List, made false statements during the reprieve it was given, and made false statements again during its probation. ZTE misled the Department of Commerce.  Instead of reprimanding ZTE staff and senior management, ZTE rewarded them. This egregious behavior cannot be ignored.”  American workers and companies confront rampant theft of U.S. intellectual property, agricultural policies that disadvantage American farmers, restrictions on market access for U.S. service providers and manufacturers, and industrial policies that cost U.S. workers their jobs. Brown has argued that trading American sanctions enforcement to promote jobs in China is a bad deal for American workers and for the security of all Americans, and suggests the Administration is not serious about countering the economic challenges China presents. The devastating effects of China’s trade policies are clear.