The United States is easing pressure off Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei by delaying a ban on the purchase of supplies from U.S. companies in order to service existing customers for a short period of time, according to U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross.
Ross, on Fox Business Network on Monday, said that Huawei’s “temporary general license” that was set to expire Monday will be extended for another 90 days.
The Chinese company isn’t out of the fire, though, as Ross also announced an additional 46 Huawei affiliates that will be added to the U.S. Entity list, which brings the total number of entities being covered by restrictions to over 100, according to CNBC.
Ross said the extension was granted to help U.S. customers, as many are located in rural areas that take more time to service.
“We’re giving them a little more time to wean themselves off,” he said.
This extension follows another that was announced by the Commerce Department in May, shortly after the Trump administration announced the ban against Huawei. The extension will last until Nov. 19, and when asked what would happen in November, Ross said that “everybody has had plenty of notice of it, there have been plenty of discussions with the president.”
The initial ban in May came while trade tensions between the U.S. and China were high, and many saw the targeted ban as an escalation in the tit-for-tat trade war. The U.S. alleges Huawei is a national security threat, and has even accused the telecom giant of spying, but those accusations have been furiously denied.
While Huawei can do business with existing U.S. companies and networks, companies still need a special license to sell parts and components used to manufacture new products.
Ross said over 50 suppliers have requested that special license with more applications expected to arrive, but he also clarified there were no “specific licenses being granted for anything.”
The ban’s pause could be a boon for some U.S. companies, though. Huawei spent $70 billion on components in 2018, and around $11 billion of that went to U.S. companies like Qualcomm, Micron Technology and Intel.
The announcement by Ross sent shares of some U.S. chipmakers higher Monday morning. Micron was up a whopping 3.6% around 11:30 a.m. EDT. Intel was up 1.2% and Qualcomm had risen 2.1% around the same time.