US lifts Trump ban on Xiaomi mobile phones

Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra
(Image credit: Basil Kronfli/Digital Camera World)

UPDATE: Xiaomi has now officially been removed from the White House blacklist. The US courts announced this week that they had cleared Xiaomi's designation as a Communist Chinese Military Company (CCMC).

“The US District Court for the District of Columbia issued a final order vacating the US Department of Defense’s designation of the company as a CCMC,” Xiaomi announced.

Xiaomi’s chairman Lei Jun said, “The company reiterates that it is an open, transparent, publicly traded, independently operated and managed corporation."

According to Verdict, Xiaomi’s share prices rose 1.44% after the announcement, closing at HK$28.15 / $3.63.

Several Chinese telecommunications companies remain blacklisted by the US government, including Huawei Technologies, ZTE, Hytera Communications, Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology and Dahua Technology.

• The best Xiaomi phone guide

ORIGINAL STORY (16 May 2021): The US government has agreed to lift a Trump-era ban on Chinese technology company Xiaomi. The smartphone giant was added to the US military list of alleged Chinese military companies in January, which blocks US investment in the company.

During his last days in office, President Trump’s administration added Xiaomi to the US military list under the National Defense Authorization act of 1999, designating the firm as a Communist Chinese Military Company, which would have led to a de-listing from US exchanges and deletion from global benchmark indexes. 

• Read more: Best camera phones

Xiaomi denied its connection to the Chinese military and sued to be removed from the list two weeks after it was added. In March, a US court temporarily halted the ban and stated that it was likely that Xiaomi would win a full reversal and issued the injunction to prevent the company from suffering irreparable harm. 

It is unclear if Xiaomi’s removal will make it easier to purchase its smartphones in the US. While there is a lot of interest in smartphones such as the Xiaomi Mi 11 and Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra, purchasing them in the US can be difficult.

The US military list of alleged Chinese military companies is different from the ‘economic blacklist’ which blocks American companies from exporting parts to specific companies. While this blacklist doesn’t prevent products from being sold in the US, it can make it harder for a company to do business there. 

Consumer drone manufacturer DJI was added to the list in December but does not yet seem to have suffered as a consequence, although Huawei is still reeling after being banned from using the Google Play store and new Android operating systems, and is struggling to source the parts it needs to produce devices.

Read more

Best camera phone lenses
Best camera apps
Best budget camera phone
PolarPro LiteChaser Pro review

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

Laurence McJannet

Laurence is an NCTJ-trained journalist with nearly 20 years' editorial experience gained on a wide range of publications, from The Beirut Times in Lebanon to The Sunday Times, and including recent freelance engagements with Future's cycling and automotive portfolios, Outdoor Fitness, and The English Home. He has recently been undertaking a sports broadcast journalism MA at Southampton Solent, gaining valuable TV and radio experience, and am currently videographer for Frome Town FC soccer team. He is the author of Bikepacking (Wild Things Publishing, 2016).