Huawei founder comments amidst tumult on security, US relationship
Ren Zhengfei has been troubled with the developments coming out of the telecommunications company he founded more than three decades ago.
“I still love my country, I support the Communist party, but I will never do anything to harm any country in the world,” Ren told The Financial Times.
Huawei has been under suspicion for some time for trade sanction infractions, lackluster privacy practices and spying on behalf of the Chinese government. Ren was enlisted with the People’s Liberation Army before he started the company.
More recently, his daughter, CFO Meng Wanzhou, was detained in Canada and could face charges of banking fraud in the United States relating to the sanction breaches. Currently on bail, she’s due back in Vancouver court next month. Ren said that he misses her “very much.”
Perhaps the most galling story came this week when Poland announced it had arrested a Huawei sales representative on claims of espionage. CNN Business reports that the company fired him on Saturday, blaming his dismissal on bringing the firm into disrepute. It continues to deny the claims saying , as it consistently has, that it abides by the laws of the foreign countries in which it conducts business.
Ren did not comment on the issue, but insists that the company has not been involved in “serious security incidents,” has “never received any request from any government to provide improper information” and that there is “no law in China [requiring] any company to install mandatory backdoors” in its equipment that can be used to siphon data.
The Chinese government has been vocal in accusing the West of improperly handling its citizens, decrying what they believe to be a lack of due process and human rights.
“It’s always been the case, you can’t work with everyone,” Ren said. “We’ll shift our focus to better serve countries that welcome Huawei.”
The founder also wants to see continued collaboration with the United States, saying that “it’s increasingly impossible for any single company or country to sustain or to support the world’s needs.”