The founder of Huawei Technologies Ren Zhengfei said he is ready to share the company’s 5G technology with potential Western buyers. According to Ren, this would help level the playing field in global telecommunications.
In an interview with the Economist, he said that Huawei is willing to give buyers perpetual access to the company’s existing 5G patents, licenses, code, technical blueprints, and production know-how for a one-time fee.
According to Ren, the acquirer will be allowed to modify the source code which means that neither Huawei nor the Chinese government would even have hypothetical control of any telecoms infrastructure built using equipment produced by the new company.
Huawei will likewise be free to develop its technology in whichever direction it pleases.The telecom giant aims to create a 5G rival that could compete with it (Huawei would keep its existing contracts and continue to sell its own 5G kit), the firm’s CEO explained.
That could help level the playing field at a time when the West is alarmed at the prospect of a Chinese company supplying the gear for most of the world’s new mobile-phone networks, said Ren. “A balanced distribution of interests is conducive to Huawei’s survival.”
The company is currently caught in the crossfire of the US-China trade war. In May, the US placed Huawei on its so-called “Entity List,” effectively barring American companies from doing business with the Chinese tech giant.
Washington explained the blacklisting of Huawei by accusing the Chinese firm of being a threat to its national security and foreign policy interests as it presumably operates under the rule of the Communist Party of China. Huawei has repeatedly denied this allegation.
Complying with the trade blacklisting, Google decided to suspend some business activity with Huawei. According to Ren, Google has been lobbying the Trump administration to allow it to resume supplying Huawei.
Washington’s restrictions were later eased; 90-day licenses were granted to allow companies to continue working with Huawei, and further permission was given by US President Donald Trump to sell some equipment.
Despite the challenges, the Shenzhen-based company reported that its global share of telecoms equipment expanded to 28.1 percent in the first half of this year. It also remains ahead in the 5G market having announced 50 commercial 5G mobile network deals.