China's SMIC applies to renew licence to supply Huawei – state media


© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A security officer stands outside a building of SMIC during its grand opening in Shanghai November 22, 2001.

SHANGHAI (Reuters) – China’s Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp (HK:) (SMIC) has asked for approval from the United States to continue supplying Huawei Technologies Co Ltd, state media outlet Beijing News reported on Tuesday, citing the company.

The company told the newspaper that it had, in accordance with regulations, it applied in the United States to continue supplying Huawei, and reiterated that it will abide by relevant laws and regulations in all countries and regions.

SMIC did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Reuters.

The restrictions imposed by Washington in May on Huawei barring major semiconductor equipment vendors from supplying or service Huawei go into effect on Tuesday.

Companies hoping to continue doing business with the smartphone maker must now first receive a licence from Washington.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd (TW:), the most important manufacturer for Huawei’s high end mobile phone chipsets, said in July it would cease supplying Huawei come the deadline.

Micron Technology Inc (O:), a maker of DRAM memory chips, also said it will no longer supply Huawei. Taiwanese chip designer MediaTek (TW:) said last month it had applied for U.S. permission to continue supplying Huawei.

Huawei is a major customer for SMIC and generates 20% of the foundry’s revenue, according to an analysis from Bernstein research.

The foundry is incapable of producing the most advanced chips in Huawei’s Kirin mobile chipsets, however, and still relies of equipment from U.S. companies who may also cease servicing Huawei as the restrictions take effect.

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SMIC itself has fallen under scrutiny from Washington. Earlier this month Reuters reported that the Trump administration is considering placing restrictions on the company similar to those it placed on Huawei, barring U.S. companies from servicing and supplying it.

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