US President Donald Trump says working on to solve ZTE issue

US Bans American Companies From Selling to China's ZTE

"President Xi of China, and I, are working together to give massive Chinese phone company, ZTE, a way to get back into business, fast".

The ZTE shutdown highlights the global ramifications of Trump's trade battle with China. ZTE was banned from using US -based hardware or software because the USA government felt it did not follow through on a court ruling that said the company needed to pay a hefty fine, fire several key executives, and admonish 32 employees - a charge ZTE denies.

President Donald Trump has instructed his Commerce Department to help get a Chinese telecommunications company get "back into business" after the U.S. government cut off access to its American suppliers.

ZTE paid over $100 million each to Qualcomm Inc, Broadcom Inc, Intel Corp and Texas Instruments, the official said.

ZTE is the second-largest telecom equipment maker in China and generated $17 billion in revenue in 2017. "Major operating activities of the company have ceased", ZTE said in a filing Wednesday.

"If evidence now exists to implicate ZTE, we believe it is appropriate for Commerce to take immediate action", the lawmakers wrote in the letter, which was addressed to secretaries of President Barack Obama's Treasury, Commerce and State departments.

More news: French anger at United States sanctions on Iran

The US accused ZTE of misleading American regulators after it settled charges of violating sanctions against North Korea and Iran.

The company recently said that it would cease "major operating activities" because of the US government's recent trade restrictions.

Companies in the United States are estimated to provide up to 30% of the components used in ZTE's products, which includes smartphones and complex equipment for telecommunications networks.

The Commerce Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Sunday. ZTE was mentioned in the FCC's proposal in a section detailing the federal government's concerns with foreign tech companies. Last week, Telstra said it would stop sales of ZTE smartphones, though it indicated it was "hopeful that ZTE will be able to reach a resolution to this matter soon so that we can recommence selling Telstra-branded ZTE devices".

But U.S. officials said this year that ZTE didn't discipline all the employees involved in the violations.

The official said the recent ban was a grossly disproportionate penalty that ignored the strides ZTE had made towards complying with USA laws.

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