The FCC’s Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau has denied a petition for reconsideration of its order designating ZTE as a company posing a national security threat to the integrity of communications networks or the communications supply chain. After reviewing the record, the bureau found no basis for reconsideration. As a result, the FCC’s $8.3 billion a year Universal Service Fund cannot be used to purchase, obtain, maintain, improve, modify, or otherwise support any equipment or services produced or provided by ZTE as well as its parents, affiliates, and subsidiaries.
“With today’s order, we are taking another important step in our ongoing efforts to protect U.S. communications networks from security risks,” said FCC Chairman Ajit Pai. “At the next open meeting on Dec. 10, the commission will vote on rules to implement the Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Reimbursement program to help carriers remove and replace untrusted equipment from their networks, months before the statutory deadline. Now it is more vital than ever that Congress appropriate funds so that our communications networks are protected from vendors that threaten our national security.”