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Huawei Lays Off Many Workers At US Research Unit

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Huawei Technologies cut more than 600 jobs at its U.S.-based research and development subsidiary Futurewei Technologies, according to reports. The move comes after the Chinese telecom equipment giant was blacklisted by the U.S. in May this year.

Huawei was quoted as saying said that the job cuts, effective July 22, were due to "curtailment of business operations caused by the U.S."

Futurewei is a research and development subsidiary of Huawei, with offices in California, Texas, Illinois and Washington State. The unit employs about 850 people in research labs across the U.S.

The Trump administration had blacklisted Huawei on national security grounds. The ban was primarily aimed at keeping equipment made by the Chinese company out of the next generation of wireless network, 5G.

The U.S. has serious concerns about the security risks posed by Chinese technology companies, including Huawei and ZTE. Intelligence agencies are concerned that Huawei and other Chinese companies may be beholden to the Chinese government, raising the risk of espionage.

Huawei and ZTE are major players in the 5G market as they manufacture and sell telecom equipment for 5G networks at competitive prices.

The blacklisting made it difficult for Huawei to sell products for which it relied on parts from U.S. suppliers. It also made it illegal for Futurewei to transfer sensitive technologies to its parent company in China.

The U.S. may now approve certain companies to re-start new sales to Huawei as long as those products do not pose national security concerns.

U.S. chipmakers, including Intel, Qualcomm and Micron Technology, are said to have lobbied intensely for sales to resume to Huawei.

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