Buy American, but maybe not for broadband gear

The U.S. Commerce Dept. and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration have made an adjustment to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 that loosens the "buy American" requirement in particular for companies that win a piece of the $7.2 billion broadband stimulus package. Though a few vendors had supported the "buy American" requirement, many others did not, including the largest equipment vendors, which get many different component systems from all over the world.

The broadband exception to the "buy American" rule covers broadband switches, router, transport and access gear, and customer premises equipment, but not coaxial or optical cables, which must be granted an additional waiver if foreign-made.

For more:
- Telephony has this story

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Zhone was one company that supported the "buy American" rule
Cisco Systems and Alcatel-Lucent disagreed with the requirement

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