U.S. Senate passes “remove and replace” bill: will remove existing Huawei and ZTE devices

The U.S. Senate voted today to pass the Secure and Trusted Telecommunications Network Se. Act,media reported. The bill, which is intended to respond to recent concerns about Chinese hardware makers, would prohibit the country’s institutions from buying telecommunications equipment from Chinese manufacturers such as Huawei and ZTE.

H.R. 4998, passed in the House of Representatives last December, will also provide $1 billion for small rural telecommunications to “remove and replace” existing equipment from these specific manufacturers. The bill would also require Trump’s signature to become law, but Politico noted that the government has acknowledged its support for the money, which will be managed by the FCC in the future.

Huawei has been the focus of U.S. attention for years because it has been accused of links to the Chinese government. The Trump administration has targeted Huawei on espionage grounds — a charge Huawei has vehemently denied. In May last year, the company was added to the list of U.S. entities, a way that U.S. companies are not allowed to do business with the hardware giant.