Fifteen years ago, a brilliant French switch engineer claimed, "The Chinese can never do what we do." I looked at him and replied, "B_______. Hundreds of Asians worked in Bell Labs. Do you think their cousins back home are not as smart as they are?" His company is long gone. Two of the five leading telecom manufacturers are Chinese, one Korean, one Swedish, and one Finnish. No company in France - or the United States - can deliver a major mobile network.
An SCMP article covered the long march still ahead to match Intel processors. That's not true in telecom. Qualcomm still probably makes the best mobile chips, but Huawei's HiSilicon is very close. Know-nothings in D.C. thought ZTE was dependent on America and made bad policy.
90% of the ZTE components could be immediately sourced today in Asia. The remaining few, mostly RF and FPGA, are actively being researched in China and could be quickly developed.