China’s biggest memory manufacturer is claimed to have supplied telecommunications equipment vendor Huawei Technologies with chips, violating American export controls.
The Financial Times reported on Wednesday it had sighted a report sent to the White House and the US Department of Commerce alleging that Yangtze Memory Technologies Co was supplying chips to Huawei.
The report was said to be from TechInsights, a company that examines parts used by consumer electronics.
In May 2019. the US placed Huawei on its Entity List, thus preventing it from obtaining American products without a licence from the Department of Commerce.
Huawei got around this by buying what it needed from branches of American firms in other countries.
The only thing it could not source were the proprietary apps that come with Google’s Android mobile operating system. It developed its own operating system, HarmonyOS, using the open-source port of Android as a base.
In May 2020, the US put in place further restrictions to cut off Huawei’s supply of semiconductors which it gets made mostly by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company.
This was done through the Foreign Direct Product Rule that makes it necessary for any company — American or foreign — that sells American products or those made using American technology to require a permit before selling to Huawei.
On top of that, new export control rules were imposed by the US Government in August 2020 and these made it well-nigh impossible for Huawei to obtain the SoCs it needs to build its flagship smartphones.
The FT report said the chips supplied to Huawei by YMTC were reportedly made in February 2021 and used in the Enjoy 20e smartphone sold by the former.
iTWire has contacted YMTC for comment.
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