Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei is reportedly incentivizing its employees to find ways to overcome the significant U.S. sanctions the company has faced over the last year.
According to a report from the South China Morning Post, later corroborated by Reuters, Huawei is offering 2 billion yuan (U.S. $286 million) in cash rewards to employees. A staff notice cited by Reuters says the extra compensation is “a mark of recognition for work in the face of U.S. pressure.”
According to Reuters, a Huawei spokesman indicated the monetary rewards would likely go to workers in research and development helping the company to overhaul the U.S. portion of its supply chain. The company’s nearly 200,000 workers will also have their pay doubled, according to multiple reports.
The U.S. Department of Commerce placed Huawei and 68 of its affiliates on its “Entity List” in May, citing “information available to the Department that provides a reasonable basis to conclude that Huawei is engaged in activities that are contrary to U.S. national security or foreign policy interest.”
The Bureau of Industry and Security kept up the pressure in August when it added 46 additional non-U.S. affiliates of Huawei to the Entity List because “they also pose a significant risk of involvement in activities contrary to the national security or foreign policy interests of the United States.”
Placement on the Entity List means U.S. companies that wish to sell to the blacklisted entity must obtain a license to do so. A temporary license renewed by the Commerce Department in August allowing some continued sales to Huawei is set to expire this month.
Despite the bans, Huawei has been in talks with U.S. telecommunications companies regarding its 5G technology, according to a report from Reuters last month. Meanwhile, President Donald Trump has been pushing other countries to avoid working with Huawei on 5G.
There is a popular belief in the U.S. government that Huawei is a risk due to its ties to the Chinese government.