Telecom Lead America: The Federal Bureau of Investigation
(FBI) has initiated a criminal investigation against Shenzhen, China-based ZTE
over sale of banned US computer equipment to Iran.
The probe also includes ZTE’s alleged subsequent attempts
to cover it up and hinder a Department of Commerce probe.
In March this year, Reuters reported that ZTE sold a
powerful surveillance system Iran’s largest telecom firm. The surveillance
system reportedly was capable of monitoring landline, mobile and Internet
Due to US sanctions on Iran, sales of the equipment are
prohibited. The report further reported that ZTE’s 98.6 million euro contract
included hardware and software products from tech companies, including
Microsoft Hewlett-Packard, Oracle, Cisco, Dell, Juniper Networks and Symantec.
ZTE is China’s second largest telecom equipment maker and
a Chinese state-owned enterprise holds the majority of stake in the company.
The company is already being investigated by the U.S.
House of Representatives’ Intelligence Committee over whether its equipment
represents a threat to national security.
Huawei and ZTE face more issues in American telecom market
A few months back, US congressional panel gave approval
to a measure designed to search and clear the U.S. nuclear-weapons complex of
technology produced by Huawei and ZTE.
Both companies have been accused of working closely with
China’s government and military.
These criminal probes pose fresh troubles for ZTE in the
US, where it has been trying to expand operations.
ZTE to continue investment in US market
Recently, ZTE said it will sustain its investment in the
U.S telecommunication market with 10 percent annual growth.