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Washington, April 20 – US authorities have imposed a $300 million penalty on tech firm Seagate for allegedly violating export controls of hard disk drives to China’s Huawei.
Seagate Technology shipped more than $1.1 billion worth of goods to Huawei after export controls were introduced in 2020, the BBC quoted the Department of Commerce as saying.
The penalty is the latest move by the US government to stop sales of sophisticated technology to China.
US authorities have said such equipment may be used by China’s military.
Seagate shipped 7.4 million drives to Huawei for about a year after the rule was imposed by the administration of former President Donald Trump, according to the Commerce Department.
It continued to do so “even after Huawei was placed on the Entity List for conduct inimical to our national security”, Matthew Axelrod of the department’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) said.
“This settlement is a clarion call about the need for companies to comply rigorously with BIS export rules, as our enforcement team works to ensure both our national security and a level playing field,” Axelrod added.
Huawei’s other two main hard drive suppliers had stopped exports to the Chinese firm in accordance with the new rule, the Department said.
Seagate said the penalty will be paid in instalments of $15 million every three months for the next five years, the BBC reported.
It comes as the US continues its drive to curb sales of technology, such as advanced computer chips, to China.