Ren Zhengfei, founder of Huawei, said recently that the U.S. government's actions against Huawei, a Chinese technology company, could damage the international reputation of the United States, CNN reported.
In recent months, the U.S. government has stepped up efforts to persuade allies not to use Huawei's telecommunications equipment in 5G wireless networks, saying it could be used for spying. However, Huawei denies that any of its products pose a safety risk and calls on the Trump government to provide evidence to support the claim.
Ren Zhengfei, also Huawei's chief executive, praised the U.S. economy as a driving force for innovation. But he said his company, Huawei, as the world's largest telecom equipment manufacturer, had been treated unfairly in the United States.
That's why Huawei decided to take the boldest action so far to counter American pressure. Last week, Huawei took the U.S. government to court to challenge a recent law banning the use of Huawei products by federal agencies.
Ren, 74, has built Huawei into a company with an annual revenue of more than $100 billion and a global smartphone sales similar to Apple's in the past 30 years. Huawei's success also turned Ren Zhengfei into a billionaire.
He refuted any claim that Huawei was under government control, insisting that it was a private company owned by its employees. Ren said he would rather shut down Huawei's business than allow Huawei equipment to be used for espionage.
Huawei's counterattack failed to prevent the Trump government from continuing to exert pressure on the company. Shortly after Huawei filed its lawsuit last week, the U.S. ambassador to Germany wrote to the German government warning that if Huawei was allowed to help build a 5G network in Germany, the United States would restrict access to U.S. intelligence from Berlin.
Ren Zhengfei said such a move would damage the good image of the United States among international investors, which had been regarded as a good place to do business in the past.
He called President Trump an excellent leader who cut taxes for American businesses, but urged him to reconsider his approach to foreign countries and businesses.
U.S. prosecutors have sued Huawei and its financial director, Meng Wanzhou, for violations of sanctions. Meng is also Ren Zhengfei's daughter, who was previously arrested in Canada and is currently opposed to being extradited to the United States. Huawei and Meng Wanzhou denied the charges, while the Chinese government demanded her immediate release.
The stakes surrounding Huawei's storm are enormous. Huawei is one of the most successful global companies in China and will play a key role in the global 5G network construction. The 5G network will connect everything, such as smart phones, robots, autopilot cars and networked traffic lights.
Over the years, Huawei has been largely excluded from the U.S. telecommunications equipment market. Ren Zhengfei said this made the U.S. government unsuitable for judging its products.
Ren Zhengfei said it was not a big problem for the United States to try to get other Western countries, such as Germany and Britain, to block Huawei.
Meng Wanzhou did not commit any crime.
U.S. prosecutors also accused Ren of lying to the FBI about Huawei's business dealings in Iran in 2007, but the FBI did not accuse him of any wrongdoing.
Asked Wednesday whether Meng would be nervous about going to the United States after his arrest, Ren Zhengfei said he had no reason to go to the United States.