ZTE was accused of dodging United States sanctions on Iran in 2016, by selling technology from the U.S. to Iran through multiple shell companies. The US Department of Commerce threatened to cut off ZTE from all its supply chain partners in the United States, which ZTE avoided by paying nearly a billion dollars in fines.
Last month, the Department of Commerce officially instated the ban, alleging that ZTE had violated the terms of the sanction case. The ban is a massive blow to ZTE, as it blocks the company from its supply chains in the United States. The company can't use Qualcomm processors, modems from Intel, and other components. Google is still trying to figure out if ZTE can legally keep its Google Play license.
According to Reuters, ZTE has halted all main business operations due to the ban. "As of now, the company maintains sufficient cash and strictly adheres to its commercial obligations subject in compliance with laws and regulations," the company said. ZTE has also suspended its online store, and removed device listings on sites like Taobao. The devices can still be purchased from Amazon, at least for now.
One employee told Reuters that staff are still reporting to work, but "with not much to do." The company is still trying to reverse the ban, and ZTE said it would "take judicial measures to protect the legal rights and interests of our Company" if necessary.