Lawyers for Huawei due in US court in Iran sanctions case

The company has denied all the charges in a case that’s heightened tensions over trade. (File/AP)
Updated 14 March 2019
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Lawyers for Huawei due in US court in Iran sanctions case

  • Prosecutors have accused Huawei of using a Hong Kong front company to trade with Iran in violation of US sanctions
  • The No. 2 smartphone maker is accused in a separate indictment of stealing technology secrets

NEW YORK: Lawyers for the Chinese electronics giant Huawei are due in court in a US case charging the company with violating Iran trade sanctions.
The company is to be arraigned Thursday morning on an indictment filed in federal court in Brooklyn.
Prosecutors have accused Huawei of using a Hong Kong front company to trade with Iran in violation of US sanctions. They allege the daughter of the company’s founder lied to banks about those dealings while serving as the company’s chief financial officer.
The daughter was arrested in Canada earlier this year and is awaiting extradition to the US
The No. 2 smartphone maker is accused in a separate indictment of stealing technology secrets. The company has denied all the charges in a case that’s heightened tensions over trade.


US wins WTO ruling against China grain import quotas

Updated 12 min 2 sec ago
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US wins WTO ruling against China grain import quotas

GENEVA: The United States won a World Trade Organization (WTO) ruling on Thursday against China’s use of tariff-rate quotas for rice, wheat and corn, which it successfully argued limited market access for US grain exports.
The case, lodged by the Obama administration in late 2016, marked the second US victory in as many months. It came amid US-China trade talks and on the heels of Washington clinching a WTO ruling on China’s price support for grains in March.
A WTO dispute panel ruled on Thursday that under the terms of its 2001 WTO accession, China’s administration of the tariff rate quotas (TRQs) as a whole violated its obligation to administer them on a “transparent, predictable and fair basis.”
TRQs are two-level tariffs, with a limited volume of imports allowed at the lower ‘in-quota’ tariff and subsequent imports charged an “out-of-quota” tariff, which is usually much higher.
The administration of state trading enterprises and non-state enterprises’ portions of TRQs are inconsistent with WTO rules, the panel said.
Australia, Brazil, India, and the European Union were among those reserving their rights in the dispute brought by the world’s largest grain exporter.
In a statement, US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue welcomed the decision, saying China’s system “ultimately inhibits TRQs from filling, denying US farmers access to China’s market for grain.”
If China’s TRQs had been fully used, $3.5 billion worth of corn, wheat and rice would have been imported in 2015 alone, it said, citing US Department of Agriculture estimates.
The two WTO rulings would help American farmers “compete on a more level playing field,” the USTR statement said, adding: “The (Trump) Administration will continue to press China to promptly come into compliance with its WTO obligations.”
The latest WTO panel said that the United States had not proven all of its case, failing to show that China had violated its public notice obligation under the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) in respect to TRQs.
China’s Ministry of Commerce said in a statement on Friday it “regrets” the panel’s decision and that it would “earnestly evaluate” the panel’s report.
China would “handle the matter appropriately in accordance with WTO dispute resolution procedures, actively safeguard the stability of the multilateral trading system and continue to administer the relevant agricultural import tariff quotas in compliance with WTO rules,” it said.
Either side can appeal the ruling within 60 days.