Xiaomi is the latest Chinese company to be added to the U.S. military list by the Trump administration under the National Defense Authorization Act of 1999. This translates into the company being considered as one which is owned by the Chinese military.
American investors can no longer buy the company’s shares or related securities, as a result of this addition. A recent order signed by President Trump, also makes it incumbent on investors to sell any shares that they already own, by November 11, 2021.
Leading researchers and advisory companies including Gartner have said that Xiaomi is the third largest smartphone maker and vendor in the world. After the updated list was released CNBC reported that the company’s shares fell by 10.6% when the market opened on Friday, (China time).
The military list is different from the entity list (the country’s trade list) which prevents U.S. companies from working with another Chinese tech giant Huawei. Apart from Xiaomi, the list also includes plane maker Comac, state-owned CNOOC – an oil giant and SMIC, China’s largest chipmaker.
The Defense Department’s announcement said that the Department is determined to highlight and counter the People’s Republic of China’s (PCR) Military-Civil Fusion development strategy which supports the modernization goals of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) by ensuring its access to advanced technologies and expertise acquired and developed by even those PRC companies, universities, and research programs that appear to be civil entities.
Xiaomi denied these connections to the Chinese military. In its statement it said that it provides products and services for civilian and commercial use and is not a “‘Communist Chinese Military Company’ defined under the NDAA.”