Shanghai/New York — The US has temporarily eased trade restrictions on China’s Huawei Technologies to minimise disruption for its customers, a move the founder of the world’s largest telecoms equipment maker says means little because it is already prepared for US action. The US commerce department blocked Huawei from buying US goods last week, a major escalation in the trade war between the world’s two top economies, saying the firm was involved in activities contrary to national security. The two countries increased import tariffs on each other’s goods over the past two weeks after US President Donald Trump said China had reneged on earlier commitments made during months of negotiations.

On Monday, the US commerce department granted Huawei a licence to buy US goods until August 19 to maintain existing telecoms networks and provide software updates to Huawei smartphones, a move intended to give telecom operators that rely on Huawei time to make other arrangements. Shares of US...

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