Sunday, April 26, 2020

FCC prepares to revoke US operating authority of Chinese carriers

The Federal Communications Commission issued Show Cause Orders to China Telecom Americas, China Unicom Americas, Pacific Networks, and ComNet. The order provides a 30-day period for the carriers to explain why the FCC should not initiate proceedings to revoke their authority to operate in the U.S.

Commissioner Carr issued the following statement:

“Last year, when we blocked China Mobile from entering the U.S. market based on national security concerns, I said it was time for a top to bottom review of every telecom carrier with ties to the communist regime in China.  I am pleased with the progress we are making on that front, as evidenced by today’s Show Cause orders. Over the past few weeks, Americans have learned that they no longer need to page through dusty foreign policy magazines to understand the consequences that flow from communist China’s brutal crackdown on freedom and free speech.  The communist party’s silencing of critics and its disappearance of hero doctors and citizen journalists exacerbated the global spread of Covid-19.  Americans are now experiencing the consequences of those oppressive actions in their own lives—whether in the loss of their jobs or their kids not being able to attend school due to Covid-19.

“Since communist China is willing to disappear its own people to advance the regime’s geopolitical agenda, it is appropriate for the FCC to closely scrutinize telecom carriers with ties to that regime.  This is a prudent step to ensure the security of America’s telecom networks.  In the Show Cause orders issued today, we give carriers 30 days to explain why the FCC should not initiate proceedings to revoke their authority.  They now have the opportunity to provide evidence showing that they are not subject to the exploitation, influence, and control of the Chinese government such that we should not look to revoke their authority to operate in the U.S.  I look forward to reviewing the record that develops and reaching a final decision on those key issues.”

  • China Telecom Americas, which is the largest subsidiary of China Telecom Corporation, has its headquarters in Herndon, Virginia, and offices in Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York, San Jose, Toronto and São Paulo. 
  • It owns and operates three Tier 1 global networks: ChinaNet (AS 4134), CN2 (AS 4809) and CTG Net (AS 36778)
  • It is a partial owner of several trans-Pacific cable systems, including China-U.S., Japan-U.S., SEA-ME-WE3 in APCN2, SMW3, SMW5, FASTER, Flag, TAE, and others.