The US on Tuesday banned China Telecom Corp (????) from operating in the country, citing “significant” national security concerns.

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) ordered China Telecom Americas Corp to discontinue its services within 60 days, ending nearly 20 years of operations in the US.

The firm’s “ownership and control by the Chinese government raise significant national security and law enforcement risks,” the FCC said in a statement.

Photo: AP

It gives opportunities for Beijing “to access, store, disrupt, and/or misroute US communications, which in turn allow them to engage in espionage and other harmful activities against the United States,” it said.

“The FCC’s decision is disappointing,” China Telecom spokesman Ge Yu (??) said in an e-mail, Bloomberg News reported. “We plan to pursue all available options while continuing to serve our customers.”

There was no response to an e-mail sent to the press contact at the Chinese embassy in Washington.

The announcement on Tuesday ramped up concerns about further measures against Chinese tech firms and battered shares in such firms listed in New York.

The selling continued yesterday in Hong Kong, where Chinese tech firms experienced hefty selling, pulling the Hang Seng Index 1.6 percent lower.

The Hang Seng Tech Index lost more than 3 percent, with Tencent Holdings Ltd (??), Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (????), JD.com Inc (??) and XD Inc (??) among those taking a hit in morning trade.

The move “seems to dampen previous hopes that the US-China relations may be turning for the better,” IG Asia Pte market strategist Yeap Jun Rong said.

It “has raised some doubts as to whether further escalation may bring back more US scrutiny on Chinese technology players,” he said.

China Telecom, China’s largest fixed-line operator, was delisted by the New York Stock Exchange in January, along with fellow state-owned telecoms firms China Mobile Ltd (????) and China Unicom Hong Kong Ltd (????).

That followed an executive order by then-US president Donald Trump banning investments by Americans in a range of companies deemed to be supplying or supporting China’s military and security apparatus.

The US Department of Justice in April last year threatened to terminate China Telecom’s US dealings, saying that US government agencies “identified substantial and unacceptable national security and law enforcement risks associated with China Telecom’s operations.”

The move “sends a broader message to Beijing, that regardless of who’s president, the US continues to be concerned about the risks posed by Chinese tech firms operating in the US,” the Washinton-based Center for a New American Security’s director of the technology and national security program, Martijn Rasser, told Bloomberg.

DOWN, NOT OUT: The election was not a total defeat, as Chen still received 73,433 votes against the recall, and his party has ‘grown up’ through the process, he said Voters in Taichung yesterday recalled Taiwan Statebuilding Party Legislator Chen Po-wei (???), making him the first legislator in the nation’s history to lose a recall election. A total of 77,899 votes were cast to recall Chen, while 73,433 voted against, the Taichung City Election Commission said, adding that 51.72 percent of the city’s second electoral district turned out. The Central Election Commission is to confirm the final figures within the next seven days, it said. Commission data showed that there are 294,976 eligible voters in the second district, comprised of Dadu (??), Shalu (??), Longjing (??), Wufong (??) and Wurih (??) districts. Chen won

INCONVENIENT: The US’ new air travel policy requires all non-citizen travelers to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, but the Taiwanese vaccine is not on the list The US government next month is to require all non-US nationals to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 before boarding a flight to the nation, but the Taiwanese vaccine manufactured by Medigen Vaccine Biologics Corp (????) is not on Washington’s list of acceptable vaccines. The new international air travel policy, which is to take effect on Nov. 8, requires all non-citizen, non-immigrant air travelers to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 before flying to the US. People are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after they receive their second dose in a two-dose series or two weeks after a single-dose vaccine, the White House said. Vaccines

MILITARY RESOLVE: Washington does not want a cold war with Beijing, it just wants ‘China to understand that we’re not going to step back,’ Biden told a CNN town hall The US would come to Taiwan’s defense and has a commitment to defend the nation China claims as its own, US President Joe Biden said on Thursday, although the White House later said there was no change in policy toward Taiwan. “Yes, we have a commitment to do that,” Biden said at a CNN town hall meeting when asked if the US would come to the defense of Taiwan, which has been facing mounting military and political pressure from Beijing to accept Chinese sovereignty. While Washington is required by law to provide Taiwan with the means to defend itself, it has long

AFTERSHOCKS LIKELY: A hiker was hurt by falling rocks at the Taroko National Park, while a tower crane was damaged at a construction site in New Taipei City A series of earthquakes yesterday injured several people, damaged buildings and disrupted transportation. A magnitude 4.5 earthquake struck 8km northeast of Hualien County Hall at 12:38pm at a depth of 23.8km, the Central Weather Bureau’s Web site showed. It was followed at 1:11pm by a magnitude 6.5 quake centered near Yilan County’s Nanao Township (??) at a depth of 66.8km. A magnitude 5.4 earthquake followed less than a minute later, with its epicenter near the county’s Datong Township (??), at a depth of 67.3km. A magnitude 4.2 quake again struck Nanao at 2:05pm at a depth of 63km. The magnitude 6.5 earthquake was the strongest