In a shock move, the Department of Defence under the outgoing Donald Trump administration has put nine Chinese companies on a blacklist citing military connections. Tech giant Xiaomi is the surprise inclusion in the list.
The blacklist bars US individuals and companies from investing in these firms. This is different from Huawei‘s trade ban where Americans were blocked from doing with the tech giant. So, Xiaomi won’t be barred from using Android, Google Play Store, or Qualcomm’s chips.
Under this new ban, the commerce department could also block the import of “sensitive technology” from China or any other country. This new order specifies that US investors, such as chipmaker Qualcomm, will have to divest their stake by November 11.
Xiaomi, which became the third-largest smartphone manufacturer by surpassing Apple last year, won’t have any immediate concerns about supply-chain management or acquiring components for now.
Trump administration has been ruthlessly putting Chinese device manufacturers on blacklists. After banning Huawei and ZTE, it banned drone maker DJI last month.
All eyes will be on the incoming Biden administration to reverse the ban. However, he has also presented a tough stance against China till now.