Agencies-AFP and digital soft power: US Congress report seen by world’s top and fourth ranked telecomms companies as ‘China Bashing‘ in a liminal space where network society vulnerabilities in the telecommunications supply chain are examined.
Click here for a PDF copy of the report, hosted by WSJ.
ZTE, formerly Zhongxing Telecommunication Equipment Corporation is a Shenzhen-based MNC telecomms equipment and systems maker is the world’s fourth largest mobile phone manufacturer by unit sales. Founded in 1985 by a group of SOEs with China’s Ministry of Aerospace, it can be hard to shake off the allusions manifesting in western critical discourse.
Indeed Huawei too, was founded by former military officer Ren Zhengfei (click for Forbes profile) having spent a decade in the PLA engineering corps.
These associations, though telling, must also factor in the fact that in pre-opening up China, the military was the most sure-fire way to get a strong-er foothold in socialist life then. It still remains an aspirant and express ticket to prosperity in the eyes of many Chinese contemporaries around my age.
The collective memory of a tried and tested path though SOE and the military still remain today. Perhaps I digress.
In a quick scan of dominant media, let us kick off with a response that is couched in a central theme of ‘fear‘ by the Global Times in the op-ed Why does US fear Chinese telecom giants? Washington is afraid that Chinese companies will bring competition and challenges to the US. Its lack of self-confidence is astonishing. Out of fear, the US is becoming oversensitive to China and even suspects equipment makers such as Huawei and ZTE. (October 9, 2012)
The report comes at a time when Huawei is struggling to establish its credentials in the US Political rhetoric against Beijing is intensifying as the US presidential election nears and as China gains clout in global affairs. Huawei and ZTE refute US lawmakers’ claims, Cisco cancels ZTE order (The Australian, October 9, 2012)
Source – Wall Street Journal, 2012
Huawei, in a statement, denied the allegations made in the report. “Unfortunately, the Committee’s report not only ignored our proven track record of network security in the United States and globally, but also paid no attention to the large amount of facts that we have provided.” The company also expressed concerns about trade protectionism. “We have to suspect that the only purpose of such a report is to impede competition and obstruct Chinese ICT companies from entering the US market.” Report Threatens Huawei’s Growth Plans
(Wall Street Journal Online, October 8, 2012)
More on ZTE’s mobile phone/data devices, carrier network solutions and enterprise communication operations in Australia here.
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Huawei calls US Congress report ‘China bashing’
Source – Sydney Morning Herald, October 9, 2012
Chinese tech giant Huawei on Monday called a congressional report warning of security risks from its telecom equipment “an exercise in China-bashing” as US lawmakers held firm to their allegations.
A US spokesman for Huawei said the report by the House Intelligence Committee which warned of national security risks from equipment from Huawei and fellow Chinese firm ZTE was “utterly lacking in substance.”
“Huawei unequivocally denies the allegations in the report,” the spokesman, William Plummer, told reporters on a conference call. Read the rest of this entry »
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