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January 22, 2020

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Campaign against Huawei to ‘escalate’

REN Zhengfei, the chief executive and founder of Chinese telecoms giant Huawei, said yesterday he was ready for the United States to escalate a “campaign” against the firm this year but insisted it would not have a significant effect on business.

Ren was speaking to business leaders at the World Economic Forum in Davos and amid a bitter court fight in Canada over a US demand to extradite Huawei’s chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou, who is his eldest daughter.

Huawei, the global leader in telecom networking equipment, has also been effectively banned by the United States from working with American firms on the grounds that it poses a national security threat — an accusation the company has consistently denied.

“This year, the US might escalate their campaign against Huawei, but I think the impact on Huawei business will not be very significant,” Ren said. He said the company had invested intensely in protecting itself and was well-prepared this year.

“That’s why we could withstand the first round of attack. In the year 2020, since we already have this experience from last year, we are more confidant that we can survive even further attacks,” he added.

“The United States… it is used to being the world number one and if someone is better than them, they might not feel comfortable,” commented Ren.

He said Huawei “used to be” an admirer of the United States and had notably been inspired by American management systems.

“From that perspective, the US should not be overly concerned about Huawei and Huawei’s position in the world.”


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