Huawei hasn’t actually sold the US any big network kit yet, CEO says
Huawei‘s CEO Ren Zhengfei has denied the Chinese network giant had any involvement in any cyber attacks on the US.
Earlier this week, the Pentagon has explicitly said China is behind espionage attacks on the US. Such accusations have blighted the prospects of network deals in the US involving Huawei equipment, because of fears that the company is colluding with spies. Now, in his first ever media interview, Mr Ren has said the accusations are groundless because, so far, Huawei has not actually sold any equipment worth mentioning to the US communications networks.
Huawei denies spying
“Huawei equipment is almost non-existent in networks currently running in the US. We have never sold any key equipment to major US carriers, nor have we sold any equipment to any US government agency,” Mr Ren said in his first ever media interview – which took place in New Zealand. “Huawei has no connection to the cyber security issues the US has encountered in the past, current or future.”
Huawei has been chosen to build New Zealand’s 4G network, and Mr Ren was visiting the country to talk about his company’s LTE equipment. Huawei is already providing equipment for the local ultra-fast broadband roll-out.
Governments and vendors have to work together on cyber-security, said Mr Ren: “Huawei attaches great importance on cyber-security. Cyber-security is a significant challenge facing our industry globally today. The solution must involve governments, telecommunications operators and ICT companies, including Huawei and our peers, as well as end users coming together to take collaborative, solutions-oriented, multi-lateral approaches to mitigate the risk.”
Huawei offers help and investment to countries that do business with it – after a meeting with David Cameron in the UK last year, it announced a £1.3 billion investment in Britain. In New Zealand, Huawei is thoroughly embedded in the nation’s IT infrastructure, has invested NZ$139 million (£76m), and its efforts to ingratiate itself include the first ever Maori language smartphone offered through the 2degrees network.
Networks also have an important role helping in emergencies, he said: “We need to ensure a stable network in any circumstances, especially when earthquakes, tsunamis and other emergencies occur. This is the ultimate social responsibility of the network infrastructure manufacturers.”
Like networks? Try our Cisco quiz!