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US approved $23 bln worth of licenses to ship tech to blacklisted Chinese firms

The Biden administration approved more than $23 billion worth of licenses for companies to ship U.S. technology to blacklisted Chinese companies in the first quarter of last year, Republican Congressman Michael McCaul said on Tuesday.

But a Trump-era policy that allows China’s blacklisted handset and telecoms equipment maker Huawei to receive some U.S. technology below the “5G level” is “under assessment,” Commerce Department official Alan Estevez, who oversees U.S. export policy, said at the same hearing.

The revelations come amid growing pressure on the Democratic Biden administration to further expand a broad crackdown on shipments of sensitive U.S. technology to China from Republican lawmakers, who now control the House of Representatives.

It also comes a week after the Biden administration added new Chinese companies to the trade blacklist for aiding Russia’s military and months after announcing a sweeping new policy aimed at dramatically curbing shipments of chips and chipmaking tools to China.

McCaul also said the Commerce Department, which oversees export controls, denied only 8% of license requests to sell to those companies during the January to March period last year. Nasdaq

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