What happened: American chipmakers Qualcomm and Intel are lobbying the US government to ease a ban on selling components to Chinese smartphone and telecommunications equipment maker Huawei. The chipmakers argue that Huawei products such as smartphones and computer servers are unlikely to pose the same security concerns as its equipment for the new fifth-generation networks, known as 5G. One person familiar with the issue quoted by Reuters said that the lobby was not about helping Huawei but preventing harm to American companies.
Why it’s important: Huawei spent $70 billion buying components in 2018, of which $11 billion went to US chip companies including Qualcomm, Intel, and Micron. US-based chipmaker Broadcom, a major supplier of wireless communication chips for smartphones and other devices made by Huawei has forecasted a decline in its second-quarter revenues and lowered its expectations for the rest of the year. Micron, which generated 13% of its revenue from Huawei in the six months ending late February, also said the ban brings uncertainty to the semiconductor industry.