FedEx sues U.S government over ‘impossible’ export rules in Huawei case

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FedEx has taken the US Department of Commerce to court for requiring it to enforce export bans with extra screening efforts.

The delivery company issued a statement June 24, complaining of an unfair and “impossible burden” of liability. “FedEx is a transportation company, not a law enforcement agency,” it says.

The suit comes amid trade tensions between China and the U.S and few days after FedEx mistakenly refused to ship a Huawei phone because of potential legal issues.

Last week, we published that the U.S. government put Huawei on a trade blacklist that bars U.S. suppliers from doing business with them because of what Trump’s administration says are national security concerns. Some other Chinese companies were included on the list of companies banned.

Subsequently, Huawei filed a lawsuit in the U.S. challenging the constitutionality of a national security law which prevents the U.S. government and its contractors from using Huawei equipment.

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FedEx’s complaint says the current Export Administration Regulations violate FedEx’s Fifth Amendment rights. “The language of the EAR imposes a constitutionally unsupportable choice for FedEx,” it says, claiming that FedEx must either risk legal penalties or refuse to ship any package that seems even slightly risky.


FedEx CEO Fred Smith told Fox News that Huawei shipping errors were emblematic of an ongoing problem, with export controls creating “confusing situations” that tarnish the company’s reputation.


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