Temporary Huawei licence extension could be the last, US warns

The US department of commerce says the licence may be ‘revised and possibly eliminated' after the latest 90-day extension.

A temporary licence allowing Huawei to continue limited transactions with American firms hangs in the balance, after the US government warned the latest extension may be its last.

Since being put on a ban list last year by President Donald Trump, a temporary general licence was put in place allowing companies such as Google to continue allowing its Android operating system to work on smartphones released before the ban.

So far, every 90 days the licence has been renewed, but the US department of commerce has said the most recent is its “expected final 90-day extension”.

“The 90-day extension provides an opportunity for users of Huawei devices and telecommunication providers – particularly those in rural US communities – to continue to temporarily operate such devices and existing networks while hastening the transition to alternative suppliers,” the US department of commerce said.

The department warns that the licence may be “revised and possibly eliminated” after the cut-off date, August 13.

It will come as a fresh blow to Huawei, whose wider ban preventing it from working freely with US firms was extended for a year on Thursday.

That particular ban prevents Huawei from using all of Google’s Android operating system on future devices it makes, with no access to the Google Play app store, and no direct availability of popular apps such as YouTube and Google Maps.

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