China orders government offices to remove foreign hardware and software: report

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The Chinese Communist Party has ordered all government offices to remove foreign hardware and software from their systems in the next three years, the Financial Times reported Sunday.

The directive comes amidst a broader trade war between the U.S. and China and on the heels of aggressive efforts by American lawmakers to keep Chinese companies, like Huawei, out of the U.S.

The policy has been nicknamed “3-5-2” because the technology replacement will happen at a pace of 30 percent in 2020, 50 percent in 2021, and 20 percent in 2022, the Times reported, citing analysts from brokerage firm China Securities.

The firm’s analysts told the outlet that as many as 30 million pieces of hardware would need to be replaced in the process.

They also noted that the order had come from the Chinese Communist party’s Central Office earlier this year.

Two cybersecurity firms separately confirmed the details of the directive to the Times based on government clients describing it to them.

While American tech giants like Google and Facebook have been barred from operating in China, the directive could hit some other key companies hard.

Chinese government offices reportedly use Microsoft’s Windows software and hardware from Dell and HP. 

The Hill has reached out to all three American companies for comment.

Potential replacements for that tech are complicated by their reliance on foreign companies. 

For example, Lenovo, a Chinese-owned company that makes laptops, uses computer processor chips made by Intel and hard drives from Samsung.

Reports of the directive come as the Trump administration has stepped up efforts to both block Chinese tech companies from American markets and dissuade allies from relying on Chinese hardware and software.

The administration placed Huawei on a blacklist in May, preventing U.S. firms from conducting business with the telecommunications giant unless they obtain a specific license. 

Several other Chinese companies, like surveillance giant Hikvision, were added to the blacklist in October. 


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