Huawei in push to ease concerns over national security

Chinese technology company Huawei has hinted at plans to decentralise and is aggressively pursuing a public relations strategy to overcome resistance to its suitability for government contracts.

Chinese technology company Huawei has hinted at plans to decentralise and is aggressively pursuing a public relations strategy to overcome resistance to its suitability for government contracts.

But industry insiders say decentralisation is meaningless and will not ease national security fears in the US or Australia.

While Huawei faces bipartisan political opposition in the US over its potential threat to national security, this is not mirrored in Australia, potentially opening the door to Huawei gaining access to the Australian government market with a change of government in September.

Asked if Huawei had plans to move its headquarters from Shenzhen, China, or list on an international stock exchange, a spokesman told IT Pro that the company "will move to decentralise its operations from China and spread the operations of the company across the world".

While those moves could help dissociate Huawei from its links to the Chinese government and ease some security concerns, the spokesman also referred to a recent news conference in New Zealand by CEO Ren Zhengfei who said the company had "no plans to list in the next five to 10 years".

Speaking through an interpreter, Mr Ren told reporters his company's relationship with the Chinese government was no different from that between companies from other countries and their governments.

He was confident no member of Huawei's staff would engage in spying, even if asked to by Chinese security agencies. The company has research and development centres in the US, Germany, Sweden, Ireland, India, Russia and Turkey. A public listing in the US would go some way to tackle fears it is controlled by, or spies for, the Chinese government.

Read the full story at smh.com.au/it-pro