A couple of months after a US judge overturned Trump’s decision to blacklist Chinese gadget giant Xiaomi, the US government has moved to make it official.
Placing Xiaomi on the list of companies that should be shunned by the US on the grounds that they might, in some unspecified way, assist the Chinese military, was one of the last acts of the Trump presidency. At the time it felt like a fit of pique by a man frustrated by the poor return yielded by four years of such activities and soon after he was voted out of office a judge confirmed it was a flawed action.
Now, according to a Bloomberg report, the US Defense Department has got around to conceding the Judge’s point. “The Parties have agreed upon a path forward that would resolve this litigation without the need for contested briefing,” a filing with US courts reportedly said. Xiaomi doesn’t seem to have commented this time, but markets are responded positively to the news.
While this was clearly the right thing to do, US policy on Chinese companies remains muddled. Earlier this week it was reported that the three Chinese telcos will be delisted from the NYSE for reasons that seem no more substantial than the original Xiaomi one. Either the US is committed to legal due process or it isn’t. If merely being Chinese is the only evidence they need to blacklist a company then why don’t they just ban the lot of them and be done with it?