Chinese telecom giant Huawei gave Overseas media a Glimpse to its state-of-the-art facilities Wednesday since the normally secretive Business steps up a counter-offensive against US warnings that it could be used by Beijing for espionage and sabotage.
Huawei has kicked off the year with an aggressive PR campaign which has seen reclusive founder Ren Zhengfeisuddenly provide a string of interviews with foreign media to deny the company was a threat, while executives have dismissed the US warnings as baseless.
“I don’t believe this is any shift in their DNA as much as a Beijing communist-style’we will pound you into submission’,” Christopher Balding, a China expert at Fulbright University in Ho Chi Minh City, told AFP.
Foreign journalist visits are barely routine at a headquarters in which high tech labs and manufacturing facilities employ 60,000 people, but these are unusual times for the business.
The United States states Huawei equipment could be manipulated by China’s Communist government to spy on other nations and interrupt critical communications.
Washington is urging authorities to ditch the business just as the world readies for the arrival of ultra-fast 5G telecommunications, an improvement that Huawei was anticipated to direct and which will allow broad adoption of next-generation technology such as artificial intelligence.
2 Canadians have been arrested in China in suspected retaliation over her arrest.
Two affiliates also have been charged with stealing trade secrets from telecommunications group T-Mobile.
“They ought to be able to ride out this,” Balding said.
“It’s not sensible to expect the whole world to ditch Huawei and that probably wouldn’t be good anyway,” he said.
Founded by Ren in 1987, Huawei has espoused a relentless”wolf” ethos that executives state fuelled its rise to become the world leader in telecom network hardware.
It was seen how the new charm offensive will perform, however, the wolf might already smell blood.
After intense recent lobbying by Huawei, reports have suggested Britain and New Zealand could walk back before signs that the corporation will be frozen out of the telecom plans.
In the planet’s top mobile industry fair in Spain last week, Huawei bagged 5G commercial contracts or partnership arrangements with 10 telecom operators including Switzerland’s Sunrise, Iceland’s Nova, Saudi Arabia’s STC and Turkey’s Turkcell.
On Thursday, Huawei Chairman Guo Ping will hold a news conference at the Shenzhen headquarters that may be the real reason for the media tour’s time.
The New York Times on Monday cited anonymous sources saying Huawei this week will announce plans to sue the US government for barring American national agencies from using the organization’s products.
The topic of the news conference has not been revealed, but a large announcement would enable Huawei to grab back the narrative from Meng’s extradition hearing.
Huawei declined to comment publicly on the Times report.
Opening its own sprawling grounds also is a chance for Huawei to show it is a global player to not be trifled with.
Approximately 60,000 employees work at its Shenzhen headquarters – close Dongguan – that has cutting-edge labs, hotels, swimming pools and fitness centers, a dozen cafeterias, and a Huawei University at which it trains staff as well as overseas customers and partners.
Huawei strenuously denies any connections to China’s government.
Sceptics, however, say it is exceedingly unlikely that Ren, a former Chinese military engineer, could have steered his company to these heights in such a strategic industry with no aid of Beijing, which has clearly stated its goal of becoming the world’s high-tech leader.
Besides its network dominance, Huawei is the world’s second-largest smartphone supplier after Samsung and Apple.