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President Trump is impeached, what does it mean for Huawei?

Donald Trump has been impeached after the House of Representatives had voted on two charges which include obstruction of Congress and abuse of power in his dealings with Ukraine. This makes him the third U.S. President in history to be impeached.

If President Trump is removed, it could be good news for Huawei which is currently banned from dealing with American businesses under his administration. Huawei and other affiliated companies are still placed under an Entity List and the US has granted another 90-day reprieve which will expire in mid-February 2020.

The Democrats have accused Trump for abusing his position to pressure Ukraine to launch investigations into his political rival, Joe Biden and his son. Apparently, he was withholding approximately USD 400 million in military assistance which was approved by Congress from Ukraine. The second charge is due to his refusal to co-operate with the impeachment inquiry while withholding evidence.

In the House, the Democrats have obtained a simple majority with 230-197 for the abuse of power charge and 229-198 for the second article. The next step is for Trump to stand trial in the Senate. If two-thirds of the Senators present vote to convict, the President will be removed and the Vice President will take over. However, no U.S. President has ever been removed from office through the impeachment process.

If Trump does get removed, some may hoped for a possibility that it might ease current trade tensions between the U.S. and China. In the Senate, there are those that oppose the current Huawei restrictions as it affects local tech companies that deal closely with Huawei.

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Companies such as Microsoft have called the ban unfair and un-American. Most recently, they have obtained a license to sell its software to Huawei and as a result, Huawei and its sub-brand Honor are able to sell new laptops with Windows pre-installed. It was reported that the current restrictions have cost American suppliers billions of dollars in revenue and the top 19 companies were reported to have generated USD 14.2 billion from Huawei in 2018.

Unfortunately, it appears that the current US Vice-President Mike Pence also holds anti-Huawei sentiments. Early this year, he has urged world leaders to reject Huawei and most recently, he has signed a deal with Poland which as seen as an attempt to block the Chinese telecommunications giant from rolling out 5G in Europe. So even if he replaces Trump, it doesn’t necessarily mean that Huawei will be out of the woods.

When the impeachment vote took place, President Trump was at a campaign rally in Michigan and he told the crowd “While we’re creating jobs and fighting for Michigan, the radical left in Congress is consumed with envy and hatred and rage, you see what’s going on.” The White House has released a statement saying that it was confident that the U.S. Senate would exonerate President Donald Trump.

[ SOURCE 2 ]

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Alexander Wong