China has systematically removed several leading foreign technology brands from its list of suppliers for government contracts over the past two years, including 60 Cisco Systems Inc. products, as well as items from Apple Inc. , Citrix Systems Inc. and Intel Corp.'s security-software company McAfee, according to a Reuters analysis published Wednesday. The report attributes the move, at least partly, to the disclosures of former U.S. National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden about the NSA's mass surveillance programs. Reuters quoted a professor at the Beijing-based University of International Business and Economics as saying that the Snowden revelations have become a "real concern" for China's top leadership. The report also cited some industry insiders as saying that China's dropping of products from Apple and others may also be aimed at propping up the country's domestic tech sector and supporting local firms. Reuters said that thousands of home-made products have been added to the state procurement lists since 2012, while those from approved foreign brands have decreased by a third.
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