The US Defense Department has determined that 20 top Chinese firms, including Huawei, are either owned by or backed by the Chinese military.
The list, seen by US media, features video surveillance firm Hikvision, China Telecoms, China Mobile and AVIC.
The determination could lay the groundwork for new US financial sanctions against the firms.
It comes as the US has pressured other countries, including the UK, to bar Huawei for national security reasons.
The BBC understands that list has been published in order to inform congressional committees, US businesses, investors and other potential partners of Chinese firms about the role such firms may play in transferring sensitive technology to the Chinese military. The list is also likely to grow.
Under US law, the Defense Department is required to track firms “owned or controlled” by China’s People’s Liberation Army that are active in the US.
The Pentagon has been under pressure in recent months from lawmakers of both the Democrats and Republican parties to publish and update the list.