ZTE’s Outgoing Vice President Describes ‘Deep Humiliation’ in Farewell Letter


A departing senior executive at China’s ZTE Corp, which is fighting a crippling US supplier ban, stated in a letter to workers on Friday that his departure amid a Sino-US trade war was “deeply humiliating.”

Zhang Zhenhui was a single of scores of executives at China’s No.2 telecommunications products maker ordered to depart as aspect of a $1.4 billion settlement deal ZTE designed with the United States in June in purchase to conclusion a seven-year supplier ban.

ZTE, which relies on US suppliers for core elements, had to stop main functions in April just after the US government imposed the ban, declaring the agency broke an settlement to self-control executives who conspired to evade US sanctions on Iran and North Korea.

As part of the settlement, ZTE agreed to spend a $1 billion great, place $400 million in escrow, and employ a US-appointed compliance keep track of. It also agreed to switch its board, clear away all customers of its management at or over senior vice-president degree together with any executives associated with the wrongdoing, in just 30 times.

Zhang, who was one of five executive vice presidents at ZTE and in cost of revenue and marketing and advertising, issued a farewell letter to staff members on Friday, employees reported.

In the letter, which was circulated on the web on Saturday, Zhang recounted his 18 decades at ZTE and mentioned he had no obligation in ZTE’s compliance violations.

“In the ecosystem of a Sino-US trade war, in the ‘white terror’ of a technologies war, all executive presidents together with me have signed termination contracts to formally depart the organization yesterday,” Zhang said.

A spokeswoman for ZTE declined to comment. Reuters could not immediately get hold of Zhang.

ZTE was identified guilty in 2016 of getting offered items with US technology to restricted countries like Iran, violating US export guidelines.

It managed to avoid a 7-year supplier ban right after achieving a settlement arrangement with the United States in March 2017 that integrated a $1.2 billion good. The United States reinstated the ban this April soon after it explained ZTE had failed to punish the executives included as agreed.

Even with a provision in the settlement agreed previous month that allowed the United States to exempt sure executives, all customers of ZTE’s previous board and previous senior management workforce have left the organization.

Business insiders instructed Reuters just about two dozen senior executives still left ZTE on Friday.

Some staff and analysts have expressed question above regardless of whether a new board and management workforce could settle in quickly enough to lead the organization out of the woods even immediately after the ban is lifted.

In the letter, Zhang also praised extensive-time rival Huawei Systems and said he genuinely wished Huawei, as a Chinese organization, could “straighten up its backbone and facial area unavoidable problems in the potential”.

Huawei, the world’s largest telecom tools maker, has prolonged been less than scrutiny in the United States, witnessed as a risk simply because of its alleged backlinks to the Chinese governing administration, which the firm has denied.

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