China is threatening to place Apple and other U.S. firms on its “unreliable entity list” as part of a series of punitive measures the country may take to retaliate for U.S. moves to block shipments of semiconductors to Huawei.
Chinese government mouthpiece Global Times says the list would be the first of a series of restrictions and investigations on U.S. companies, including Apple. Cisco, and Qualcomm.
“China will take forceful countermeasures to protect its own legitimate rights,” if the US moves forward with the plan to bar essential suppliers of chips, including Taiwan-based TSMC, from selling chips to the Chinese tech giant, the source told the Global Times in an exclusive interview.
The measures include adding related US companies to China’s “unreliable entity list,” imposing restrictions on or launching investigations into US companies like Qualcomm, Cisco and Apple according to Chinese laws and regulations like Cybersecurity Review Measures and Anti-monopoly Law, and suspending airplane purchases from Boeing, said the source.
Once a company is added to China’s “unreliable entity list” it would face legal and administrative measures, and Chinese citizens would be warned against dealing with the company.
The Chinese moves come in the wake of the U.S. commerce department’s last week announcing rules that limit U.S. companies form supplying semiconductor, part, and processor designs to Huawei and its affiliated companies. The rules also apply to third-party companies, if the U.S. firm knows the parts will eventually be used in Huawei products.
TSMC, Apple’s Taiwanese chip supplier also works with Huawei, and the move prevents the company from purchasing U.S. supplies for chips to be used in Huawei handsets. While a Monday report from Nikkei indicated TSMC has moved to stop new orders from Huawei, Reuters reports TSMC has told it that such reports were “purely market rumor.”