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MIT Ends Ties with Huawei and ZTE over Sanction Violations

MIT Ends Ties with Huawei and ZTE over Sanction Violations

Huawei CEO was arrested in Canada in December 2018, while ZTE had to pay US$ 1 billion for violating sanctions.

On April 4, 2019, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology announced that it will end the collaboration with the Chinese telecom companies, Huawei and ZTE over their dispute with the US government. MIT has suspended all the collaborations including research, projects, and funding. “At this time, based on this enhanced review, MIT is not accepting new engagements or renewing existing ones with Huawei and ZTE or their respective subsidiaries due to federal investigations regarding violations of sanction restrictions,” said Richard Lester, associate provost of MIT and Maria Zuber, vice-president of the school for research in a letter to staff.

A similar incident took place in January 2019, when Oxford University decided to stop taking funds from Huawei, as the public concerns were raised in recent months in the country. Both the Chinese telecom companies have been heavily scrutinized in the U.S. over espionage risks since 2011. Later, the House of Representative Intelligence Committee recommended to shut it down. Since then, there has been a trade war with China, the US is insisting the European Union ban Huawei. On the other hand, both the companies, headquartered in Shenzhen, China will be impacted by this decision.

Lester and Zuber believe that partnerships with Hong Kong, Russia, China, and Saudi Arabia will be under investigation for risk factors. In December 2018, Huawei CEO, Meng Wanzhou was arrested in Canada on behalf of the US for violating the Iran Trade Sanctions. She is the daughter of the company founder & president Ren Zhengfei as she waits in Canada for extradition. Furthermore, ZTE was also agreed to pay US$ 1 billion fine to the US for violating sanctions by selling telecom technology to North Korea and Iran.