According to the Global Times daily, quoting a source close to the Chinese government, "China will take forceful countermeasures to protect its own legitimate rights", if the US moves forward with its threat to bar essential suppliers, including Taiwan-based TSMC, from selling chips to Huawei.
The countermeasures would include adding select US companies to China's "unreliable entity list", imposing sanctions and conducting investigations into them in line with Chinese law and regulations.
The US companies listed by the source include Apple, Cisco, and Qualcomm, as well as Boeing, from which Beijing might stop buying aircraft.
"China should implement these countermeasures to the extent that the US dare not ask for a mile after being given an inch", former senior trade official and an executive council member of the China Society for World Trade Organization Studies He Weiwen said, as quoted by the Global Times. He advised China to carry out "thorough investigations into relevant US companies" and "let them feel the pain".
Earlier in the day, the US Department of Commerce announced new restrictions against Huawei, including a ban on the export of semiconductors from global chipmakers to the Chinese tech giant. In a separate statement on Friday, the Commerce Department announced that it would extend a license that allows some American companies, particularly in rural US communities, to continue to do business with Huawei for another 90 days.
Meanwhile, the United States will continue to restrict exports to Huawei, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a press release on Friday.
"The United States will continue to restrict most US exports to Huawei and its affiliates on the Entity List for activities that threaten US national security and international stability", Pompeo said.
US authorities placed Huawei, ZTE, and over 70 Chinese tech firms on an Entity List in May 2019, citing national security concerns that Chinese technologies could be used to spy on countries at the behest of Chinese authorities. Washington has not presented any evidence against Huawei or the Chinese government to date despite the allegations, which both Huawei and China have sharply and repeatedly denied.