The U.S. Department of Commerce has eased some of the restrictions imposed on Huawei that will allow U.S. companies to work with it on setting standards for 5G networks. The change in the rule has already been signed by the Department of Commerce and comes after concerns from many U.S. companies.
With the ban on Huawei, many U.S. companies were unsure of what details to share with the company. This led to their reduced participation in the 5G standards settings. After receiving feedback, the U.S. government decided to make this move.
U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross confirmed the move from the U.S. government in a statement:
“The United States will not cede leadership in global innovation,” Ross said. “The department is committed to protecting U.S. national security and foreign policy interests by encouraging U.S. industry to fully engage and advocate for U.S. technologies to become international standards.”
Despite the change in the rule, government and industry officials claim that this does not mean the U.S. is changing its stance against Huawei. The move stems from the fact that not having Huawei on board for the standards settings could put the U.S. at a disadvantage as companies work together to ensure their networking equipment is compatible with each other.
The U.S. Department of Commerce had put Huawei on an Entity List in 2019 that prevented U.S. companies from working with them. Among other things, this also led to Huawei's Android license being revoked which has prevented it from launching new devices with access to Google's suite of apps and services. Last month, the U.S. government also amended its export rules to ensure that Huawei was not able to acquire chips from Taiwan-based TSMC, a move that has put Huawei's survival on stake.