Huawei caught between US and China trade divide
The US and China aren’t just engulfed in a war of exports and imports, but a deadlock in the domain of technology. American intelligence chiefs have advised the public to stray far from Chinese networking products. The government also wants to prepare measures against the Chinese restrictions on foreign cloud services requiring that they do business as part of a joint operation with a domestic company.
The Wall Street Journal reports that one of Huawei’s trio of rotating CEOs, Eric Xu, is wondering how his telecommunications company has been caught in a worrisome trans-Pacific fight.
“It is beyond myself to clearly explain what is going on between the two countries,” Xu said.
Huawei, which failed to get a smartphone carriage deal with any of the carriers this year, has been cast by Washington as a spectre acting on the part of the Chinese government. The company has all but retreated from providing equipment to rural broadband firms in the US and could be winding down its presence at one of the nation’s biggest tech retailers. It has also fired five US-based employees, including its regulatory representative, William Plummer.
The world’s third-largest manufacturer of mobile phones has been able to grow its shipment numbers year after year with negligible support from US sales. While the company is expected to maintain a presence in the country, Xu’s comments make it clear that other regions will be receiving greater priority.
Yesterday, the Department of Commerce placed ZTE on the Entities List, banning it from importing products from the United States. China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs reacted to the ban, saying it is ready to “launch our countermeasures” if the US continues to restrict overseas business.
Chinese competition regulators have stalled Qualcomm’s $44 billion acquisition of Dutch firm NXP Semiconductors.