President Trump said on Sunday that he would help Chinese telecom giant ZTE resume business after hiring "major operations" due to the recent US trade restrictions.
"President Xi of China, and I work together to give the big Chinese telephone company ZTE a chance to get back into business quickly." Trump tweeted . "Too many jobs in China have been lost, and the Department of Commerce has been instructed to enforce it!"
The comment marks a dramatic tone for a president who has long accused China of stealing US jobs ̵
In April, the Department of Commerce punished ZTE for breaching an agreement with the US government over illegal shipments to Iran and North Korea. As a result, the Trump administration blocked US companies for seven years exporting parts to ZTE, the fourth-largest smartphone maker, including critical microchips.
Without these components, ZTE stopped operating and stressed in a statement on Wednesday that it had "active communication with relevant US government departments to facilitate the modification or reversal of the Commerce Department's order."
Trump's tweet comes only a few Days before US officials plan to meet with Liu He, China's deputy chairman, over tense trade talks, this meeting is expected to take place in Washington this week or next week and Trump's new willingness to try and save ZTE also marks a sharp one Reversal of existing US policy, which sought to punish the company for having repeatedly made no changes in the face of US sanctions, as the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Commerce had been strongly opposed to ZTE just a few days ago.
Meanwhile, Trump is attempting a historic deal with North Korea that would try to denuclearize the Korean peninsula. The president has said that his economic access to China is linked to his national security strategy and that China plays a key role in any decision of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
The White House did not respond immediately to a request for comment, nor has a spokesman for the Commerce Department. A ZTE spokesman also did not respond to an email seeking a comment.
Nevertheless, the trade tensions between the US and China remain sky-high. Trump has proposed up to $ 60 billion in tariffs on Chinese goods, and Beijing has responded in the same way, resulting in continued threats from the president, who lamented the trade deficit between the two countries during the 2016 presidential campaign.
The Trump government has also tried to restrict the intervention of Chinese telecommunications companies in the United States. The Department of Defense ordered in April that the exchange of ZTE phones by the US authorities should be stopped. And the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recently prevented US Internet providers receiving government monies from spending it on equipment from companies such as Huawei, another major Chinese telecommunications company.
The US government initially fined ZTE with the Chinese telecom in 2017. V3.espacenet.com/textdoc? to clear the charges that US sanctions against Iran and North Korea have been violated. As part of the settlement, ZTE also had to punish the employees concerned and tighten its internal controls.
But US officials said this year, ZTE did not discipline all employees involved in the violations. "This monstrous behavior can not be ignored," said Trade Minister Wilbur Ross in April.
Trump's international economic policies were marked by ultimatums and threats, which are often followed by exceptions and reversals. Foreign leaders often do not know if Trump will do anything he wants to do or if he will back down.
For example, he said that he would impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, but he has temporarily freed Canada, Mexico, the European Union and several other countries are leaving China and Japan in search of answers.
His consultants have had official or unofficial trade talks with many countries, and these talks are uncertain, because it is unclear whether Trump will enforce promises to impose tariffs, even if this could increase prices for US consumers ,
But nowhere is the US trade relationship as complicated as with China. During the campaign, Trump spent two years challenging China over a suspected fraud involving currency devaluation and other measures to steal American jobs and harm US workers.
The US purchases more than $ 500 billion in Chinese goods every year, but Trump has proposed forcing China to buy $ 200 billion worth of extra goods from the United States.
A few weeks ago, as tensions between the White House and Beijing escalated, both countries pledged to tighten trade restrictions and worrisome financial markets amid fears of a trade war.
Chinese leaders have so far tried to resist Trump's demands, but in recent weeks they have shown willingness to negotiate. The economies are inextricably linked as China relies on US consumers buying many of its products, and the US on Chinese manufacturers for a wide range of goods.
Trump has repeatedly led a "friendship" with Chinese leader Xi Jinping. even though they met only a few times, and he said that this relationship will continue, no matter what happens with the trade talks. However, one of the biggest tensions between the two countries is the allegation that China is stealing intellectual property from US companies and then implementing it for their own companies.