New Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said she plans to make full use of an export blacklist left by the Trump administration that seeks to cut off US exports to certain Chinese firms, including the telecommunication company Huawei.
“Chinese telecommunications companies — their behavior is a threat to American economic and national security. We’re going to use (the export blacklist) to its full effect,” Raimondo told MSNBC.
The blacklist, known as the entity list, requires US firms to obtain export licenses to sell goods to the Chinese companies that are blacklisted. The list was created under the guise of national security, as the Trump Administration alleged the firms have ties to China’s military.
“If you look at their behavior, they deserve to be targeted and if it’s necessary then that’s what we’ll do,” Raimondo said of the blacklisted companies.
In December, the Trump administration added the Chinese chipmaker SMIC to the list. A report from Reuters published on Thursday says US SMIC suppliers have been struggling to obtain the required license to export to the chip giant, and this comes amid a global semiconductor shortage.
Raimondo’s comments and the report on SMIC shows that the Biden administration plans to use the tools left in place by the previous administration to keep a hard line on China. On Wednesday, Secretary of State Antony Blinken singled out China as the “biggest geopolitical test of the 21st century.”