Visitors pass in front of the Huawei’s stand on the first day of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelonaon on February 27, 2017 in Barcelona.
Lluis Gene | AFP | Getty Images
Huawei claimed Thursday that attempts to restrict the Chinese tech giant from doing business stateside will cause the U.S. to fall behind in the development of next-generation mobile networks — and could raise “other serious legal issues.”
On Wednesday, President Donald Trump signed an executive order that gives the government authority to block transactions that involve information or communications technology that “poses an unacceptable risk to the national security of the United States.”
According to the executive order, the technology that could be blocked will be that which is “designed, developed, manufactured, or supplied, by persons owned by, controlled by, or subject to the jurisdiction or direction of a foreign adversary.”
While Huawei isn’t named in the policy, the U.S. has long-accused the Chinese telecoms equipment maker of being closely-linked to China’s ruling Communist Party. Washington has also alleged that Huawei’s telecom equipment poses a national security risk because it could be used by Beijing for espionage. Huawei has denied all of these claims.
In a statement to CNBC on Thursday, Huawei said that further moves to block it from the U.S. market could have a damaging impact on the country’s development of 5G technology.
“Huawei is the unparalleled leader in 5G. We are ready and willing to engage with the US government and come up with effective measures to ensure product security,” a spokesperson for the company told CNBC.
“Restricting Huawei from doing business in the US will not make the US more secure or stronger; instead, this will only serve to limit the US to inferior yet more expensive alternatives, leaving the US lagging behind in 5G deployment, and eventually harming the interests of US companies and consumers,” the statement said. “In addition, unreasonable restrictions will infringe upon Huawei’s rights and raise other serious legal issues.”
5G refers to the next-generation of mobile networks that promise super-fast download speeds and the ability to underpin new technologies like driverless cars, which require huge amounts of data to be transmitted.
Huawei was also put on the Bureau of Industry and Security’s (BIS) so-called Entity List. That means U.S. firms will need to get a license from the BIS to sell or transfer technology to Huawei. The Chinese company relies on some components from companies like Intel.