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China Supply Problems For Big Brands Including Apple & Dell After New US Ban

Chinese Smartphone brands Oppo, Huawei, Realme, Xiaomi, Vivo and One Plus as well as Apple Dell and Hewlett Packard all technology Companies who rely on Chinese parts are facing a new problem today after the US cranked up their actions against China by blacklisting key smartphone and PC component suppliers.

The move is expected to shake up consumer electronics supply chains and hasten the ongoing decoupling of the world’s two largest economies with Chinese appliance brands such as Haier, ASKO, Hisense and Fisher & Paykel set to face new component issues.

Phil Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide product marketing, introduces the iPad Mini in San Jose, Calif., Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2012. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

Smartphone Camera and touch module supplier O-Film Group was just one of 11 Chinese companies added to the U.S. Commerce Department’s Entity List on Monday over alleged human rights abuses involving China’s Uighur Muslim minority.

Founded in 2002, O-Film became part of the Apple supply chain in 2017, first for iPads and later for iPhones, proving it could meet the California company’s rigorous demands for quality.

O-Film has since become a formidable competitor to leading tech suppliers, such as Foxconn-owned Sharp of Japan and LG Innotek in camera modules and Taiwan’s TPK-Holding in touch-screen module components which are found in several notebooks.

The Shenzhen-listed O-Film is a rising star in the consumer electronics and automobile supply chains, and supplies a wide range of companies, including Microsoft, HP, Dell, General Motors and Amazon, as well as Apple.

It also counts Samsung Electronics, Huawei Technologies, Oppo and Sony as clients.

But the Commerce Department has named O-Film’s subsidiary in Nanchang in connection with the forced labour of Uighurs and other Muslim minority groups in western China.

Companies added to the Entity List must apply for special licenses if they wish to access American technologies. Shares of O-Film dropped nearly 4% on Tuesday in Shenzhen following the U.S. government’s announcement, while the overall market rose 0.65%.

Two other companies added to the Entity list overnight include Tanyuan Technology and KTK Group, both listed in Shanghai — are also part of the global consumer electronics supply chain. Tanyuan produces heat-dissipating materials for smartphones, tablet and laptop computers.

Washington’s latest move could significantly impact multinational and U.S. companies’ choice of suppliers and even change the tech supply chain’s competitive landscape in the longer term creating supply problems for Australian retailers and distributors.

“The U.S Federal administration has said that American companies should reduce their engagement with Chinese companies in the long run,” Chiu Shih-fang, a senior smartphone and supply chain analyst at Taiwan Institute of Economic Research, told the Nikkei Asian Review.

“Tech companies will have to weigh the risks before continuing their business relations with companies that are blacklisted by the U.S. government.”


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