Huawei MateBook launch in question amid escalating U.S.-China trade war

What you need to know

  • As trade tensions continue to escalate between the U.S. and China, it's unclear whether the Huawei's latest MateBooks will be affected.
  • Huawei, a China-based company, was recently added to a trade blacklist by the U.S. Commerce Department.
  • In a statement to Windows Central, Huawei denounced the Commerce Department's move but could not comment on whether it will impact the availability of the MateBook X Pro and MateBook 14.

Amid escalating trade tensions between the U.S. and China, Huawei was placed on an export blacklist by the U.S. Department of Commerce.

Huawei's addition to the blacklist, along with 68 of its affiliates, will means that the company will no longer be able to buy parts from U.S. suppliers without first obtaining approval from the U.S. government. But with the new MateBook 14 and MateBook X Pro on the horizon, it's unclear what the move will mean for the launch of Huawei's latest pair of laptops.

"We have not announced US availability so we can't comment at this time," a Huawei spokesperson said in a statement.

While that may not make the fate of Huawei's new MateBooks any clearer, the company thoroughly rebuffed the Commerce Department's move. From Huawei:

Huawei is against the decision made by the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) of the US Department of Commerce. This decision is in no one's interest. It will do significant economic harm to the American companies with which Huawei does business, affect tens of thousands of American jobs, and disrupt the current collaboration and mutual trust that exist on the global supply chain. Huawei will seek remedies immediately and find a resolution to this matter. We will also proactively endeavor to mitigate the impacts of this incident.

The Commerce Department's decision to place Huawei on an export blacklist comes as the Tump administration issued a broader executive order to protect U.S. infrastructure from "foreign adversaries," referring to the issue as a "national emergency." The order gives the commerce secretary broad authority to block transactions with tech companies who have been labeled as being controlled by foreign adversaries, with the goal of preventing potential espionage and threats to critical infrastructure.

The language of the order is relatively broad, but it remains to be seen how much of an affect it will have on the technology sector as a whole.

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Dan Thorp-Lancaster

Dan Thorp-Lancaster is the former Editor-in-Chief of Windows Central. He began working with Windows Central, Android Central, and iMore as a news writer in 2014 and is obsessed with tech of all sorts. You can follow Dan on Twitter @DthorpL and Instagram @heyitsdtl