Chinese telecom company Huawei is currently under media scrutiny after its CFO Meng Wanzhou was arrested in Canada on behalf of the U.S. administration. American intelligence agencies view Huawei with intense suspicion because of the company’s connections with the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and its push to infiltrate the American market with not-so-benign intentions.
Huawei and the CCP
“[Communism] is antithetical to the progression of human nature, and the prosperity and salubriousness of human nature… When you understood that the [People‘s Liberation Army’s] former general founded Huawei, and you understood what they were up to, if you understood the influence and operations run by [people] like Ceaușescu [former Romanian communist dictator] and his regime, you understood what Huawei was,” Thaddeus McCotter, former U.S. Congressman, said to Breitbart.
Though it is true that Huawei is a private company, it is also true that the term “private company” has literally no meaning in China. Unlike the U.S., where rights of a private company are protected by law and courts, Chinese private firms have no choice but to comply with directives from the CCP. Once this concept is understood, it is easy to see why Huawei is a risk to U.S. security — the company can be made to hand over any data it collects in the U.S. to Beijing.
“There is little reason to believe that its network technology and cell phones would not provide the CCP and its armed wing, the People’s Liberation Army, with backdoor access to American communication networks — including those used by for national security purposes — and infringe on the privacy of American users,” according to AEI.
What makes Huawei even worse is that it has been willingly complicit in many of the human rights abuse programs initiated by the Communist Party. The company literally helped create China’s censorship system by providing the technology for it. Huawei also supplied technologies that enabled the Chinese regime to track and persecute political and religious “threats.” To have such a company gain access to the data of American citizens is clearly a national security risk. Hence, the strong opposition against Huawei.
The 5G issue
Huawei’s plan to dominate the 5G international market is also a cause of concern among the U.S. and its allies. China’s 5-year economic plan has set aside close to US$400 billion for 5G-related investments. In addition, it has already built more than 350,000 5G cell sites since 2015. These two factors give Chinese companies like Huawei a tremendous advantage over other international firms.
In fact, the U.S. is believed to be playing catch up with China when it comes to 5G technology. And this might be something to think about. For one, there is a real risk that China might zoom ahead on technologies that depend on the faster speeds provided by 5G. But more importantly, allowing Chinese companies like Huawei to set international standards on 5G enables the CCP to collect data from foreign citizens far more easily.
This is the reason why countries like the U.S., Australia, Japan, and New Zealand decided to prevent Huawei from implementing 5G rollouts in their countries. The UK, Canada, and a host of other nations are also considering banning Huawei’s 5G technology. However, bans alone won’t solve the problem. The U.S. administration has to come up with a comprehensive plan to support its tech companies so that a better, more efficient 5G technology is developed as early as possible to compete against Huawei.