Ren Zhengfe said that the US government’s 90-day extension “doesn’t mean much”, adding that the company was ready to deal with the ban. “We are very grateful to the US companies. They have made a lot of contributions to us. Many of our consultants are from American companies such as IBM.”
“We can make chips as good as those made by US companies, but it does not mean that we will not buy chips from them,” Ren added.
He said the company will not exclude US chips. “Instead, we should grow together. But if there is a supply shortage, we have a backup. In the “peace period”, half of our chips are from the US companies and half from Huawei. We cannot be isolated from the world.”
Ren also highlighted that Huawei’s 5G plan will not be affected by the US ban. “Others will definitely not be able to catch up with Huawei in 5G technologies for two or three years,” he said.
Ren said Europe maintains close communications with Huawei. For instance, 5G capacity is 20 times that of 4G, and its power consumption 10 times less. “We also use materials that will not corrode for decades, and these characteristics are very suitable for Europe.”
Ren said the US technologies are still worth learning in both their depth and width. Many small US companies have super-precision products. “But in our business (5G), Huawei is at the forefront, though when it comes to comparison between countries, we are still far behind the United States,” Ren added.
“We will not go through an extreme shortage of supplies. We have made sound preparations,” Ren said.
Ren said the current difficulties can spur China to develop the electronics industry in a down-to-earth manner. Pouring in money is not enough to develop the semiconductor industry. Instead, talent, including mathematicians and physicists, is needed to grow the chip sector. “Global talent is also needed. It is very difficult to rely solely on China’s independent innovation to succeed. Why can’t we embrace the world and rely on global innovation?” Ren added.
“Don’t fan nationalist sentiment,” Ren also warned. Currently, the attitudes toward Huawei are divided into two groups. One represents the genuine patriots who support Huawei, while the other believes that Huawei has kidnapped the patriotic feelings of the entire society.
The U.S. on Monday eased some restrictions imposed last week on Chinese tech giant Huawei, a rollback that will be in effect for 90 days starting on Monday.
US President Donald Trump signed an executive order declaring a national emergency regarding telecommunications equipment that could pose a risk to national security. The order bans American companies from using any telecommunications equipment that the secretary of Commerce declares to be a national security risk.
Q: On Monday, the US Commerce Department temporarily eased restrictions against Huawei, saying it would let American firms continue transactions with the Chinese company for 90 days. I wonder if the Chinese foreign ministry has any comment on this?
A: We have been stating our position these past few days. The US is using state power to crack down on foreign enterprises and disrupt market activities. To be frank, it won't serve US interests in the end. As I said while answering an earlier question, trade and investment relations between countries must be equal-footed and mutually beneficial. The Chinese government has the resolve and the capability to defend its legitimate and lawful rights and interests.