This would allow any U.S company to tap on Huawei's patents, licenses, blueprints and knowledge to manufacture, install and operate 5G equipment.

Jared Alex Tan  |  Singapore
Published 2019-09-13 15:10:21

It would be an understatement to say that things have been tense between Huawei and the US government in the last few months, but in a move no one was expecting the Chinese tech giant has extended a giant olive branch to the Trump administration.

In a recent interview with The New York Times, Huawei CEO Ren Zhengfei made a surprising announcement that the company is open to selling their 5G technology and techniques — one of their most valuable intellectual properties — to American companies, so that the they can build up their own 5G industry.

“That would create a balanced situation between China, the U.S and Europe,” he said. “But the U.S side has to accept us at some level for that to happen.”

If America — which currently has no 5G networking manufacturer of its own — were to accept the offer, this would allow any U.S company to tap on Huawei’s patents, licenses, blueprints and knowledge to manufacture, install and operate 5G equipment completely independent of the company.

Ren added that companies can even modify Huawei’s technology and change the software code to meet their security requirements, which would go a long way in alleviating concerns that the company is helping the Chinese government spy on or disrupt other countries’ telecommunication systems.

Huawei has repeatedly denied these allegations, but that hasn’t stopped Australia from cutting the company out of their 5G plans, while the UK entertains the idea of doing the same.

Nokia (Europe), Ericsson (Europe), Samsung (South Korea) and ZTE (China) are currently the main alternatives when it comes to 5G equipment, though their products are far more expensive than Huawei’s.

While this comes as a surprise, it kind of makes sense when you consider the collateral damage thus far — thanks to the trade ban it’s pretty much confirmed that the upcoming Mate 30 won’t be able to use Google apps and services, and this peace offering could be the first step in preventing future products from suffering the same fate.

“If the U.S reaches out to us in good faith and promises to change their irrational approach to Huawei, then we are open to a dialogue. If the U.S feels we have done something wrong, then we can discuss it in good faith and find a reasonable solution.” Ren said.

Feature Image Credit: Huawei

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