The Trump administration told lawmakers it reached a deal to keep Chinese phone maker ZTE in business, according to a report Friday in The New York Times.
The deal, arranged by the Commerce Department, requires ZTE to pay a substantial fine, hire American compliance officers and change its management team, says the Times report, which cites an unnamed source familiar with the matter. The Commerce Department, in return, would lift an order that currently prevents ZTE from buying American products.
ZTE, the fourth-largest smartphone maker in the US, has been dealing with the seven-year ban after the US government determined ZTE violated terms of a 2017 settlement by failing to properly reprimand employees involved with illegally shipping US equipment to Iran. The ban forced ZTE to shut down its "major operating activities."
The Commerce Department's new deal would permit ZTE to once again do business with US companies, including chipmaker Qualcomm,.
The White House and ZTE didn't immediately respond to requests for comment.