Norm Coleman
Norm Coleman

Former Minnesota Republican Senator Norm Coleman represents ZTE Corp, which scored a major victory today as the US Commerce Dept. announced a deal to lift sanctions imposed on it.

The US slapped sanctions on Chinese government-controlled in ZTE in April for selling goods to North Korea and Iran.

Those strictures, which banned ZTE from buying components from Qualcomm, Corning and Google, effectively shut the smartphone maker down last month. Sixty percent of the components used in ZTE’s flagship Axon M phone are from US suppliers.

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross put the Chinese company back in business, announcing that ZTE agreed to pay a $1B penalty and embed an American-selected compliance team within the company for the next decade.

ZTE also agreed to change its executive team and board within 30 days.

Ross, who just returned to DC following trade talks in Beijing, called the ZTE action the “first time” that Washington pushed back on China over trade practices.

Coleman’s ZTE connection is through law firm Hogan Lovells.

He’s joined by Aaron Cutler, who was an aide to former House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, on HL’s ZTE team.