The US moved to block China Mobile from entering its telecommunications market on national security grounds. This is going to be a fight between the world’s two biggest economies days before they’re expected to impose tariffs on each other over trade.=
The Federal Communications Commission should deny state-backed China Mobile’s seven-year-old application to offer international voice traffic between the US and foreign countries, according to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA).
They said that China Mobile’s entry “would pose unacceptable national security and law enforcement risks. “This is besides additional tariffs on $200bn of Chinese imports that could be implemented if China imposes counter-measures.
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Talks between the US and China have stalled in part over American demands that Beijing reduce government support for high-tech industries.
China Mobile shares fell drastically in the US. ZTE, the Chinese telecom equipment maker that was blocked off from US suppliers in April for violating a sanctions settlement, has seen its stock fallen by about half since the ban was announcement.
China Mobile is the world’s largest mobile phone operator by customers, with about 899 million subscribers. In the NTIA filing, the carrier indicated it didn’t intend to offer mobile service within the US.
They said “The deepening integration of the global telecommunications market has created risks and vulnerabilities in a sector replete with a broad range of malicious activities,” Officials had “significant engagement” with China Mobile but weren’t able to resolve concerns, David Red, assistant secretary for communications and information at NTIA, said in a news release.