News / Economy

EU Concerned About Chinese Subsidies to Telecom Makers

A man looks at a Huawei mobile phone as he shops at an electronic market in Shanghai, Jan. 22, 2013.A man looks at a Huawei mobile phone as he shops at an electronic market in Shanghai, Jan. 22, 2013.
x
A man looks at a Huawei mobile phone as he shops at an electronic market in Shanghai, Jan. 22, 2013.
A man looks at a Huawei mobile phone as he shops at an electronic market in Shanghai, Jan. 22, 2013.
Reuters
The European Commission plans to send a formal warning to China that it is ready to levy sanctions against telecom equipment makers Huawei and ZTE Corp over illegal subsidies, people close to the matter said.

EU trade chief Karel De Gucht is set to win support from the bloc's executive on Wednesday to send the warning letter and show China's new president, Xi Jinping, that Brussels is serious about countering what it says is state support.

“We want to send a warning to the Chinese, a letter of intent that if they don't change their practices, there will be duties,'' said one person involved, adding that De Gucht had the full backing of European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso.

The decision will mark an intensification of the European Union's efforts to guard against what Brussels says is dumping by China, the EU's second-largest trading partner. From June, the Commission will also levy duties on billions of dollars of solar panels from China, EU officials have told Reuters.

Huawei was a little-known telecom firm less than a decade ago, but today, along with its smaller rival ZTE , it holds almost a quarter of the European market.

That poses a security risk, the Commission says, because European industries ranging from healthcare to water utilities are becoming reliant on cheaper Chinese wireless technology.

An internal EU report last year recommended that the 27-member bloc should take action against Chinese telecommunications equipment makers as their increasing dominance of mobile networks made them a threat to security, as well as to home-grown companies.

Collecting evidence
A Huawei spokeswoman in Brussels declined to comment on the move, but the company denies receiving unfair subsidies. It says its advantages are due to low-cost manufacturing and that its products are secure. There was no comment ZTE on Tuesday, but it also denies allegations of illegal subsidies.

De Gucht told Reuters in February there were serious concerns about China's growing presence in mobile telecoms networks, noting that the United States and Australia had effectively shut Huawei out of their markets.

Last year, Germany excluded Huawei from supplying the infrastructure for a national academic research network.

European manufacturers Ericsson, Alcatel-Lucent and Nokia Siemens Networks fear retaliation in China, however, if they push to launch an anti-subsidy case, so the Commission has been collecting evidence on Huawei and ZTE with a view to launching a case on its own initiative.

Division between EU countries over the telecoms issue meant De Gucht has trodden cautiously. Britain and the Netherlands have embraced Huawei as a major job provider, while France and Italy have been backing De Gucht on going ahead with sanctions.

Officials say they now have proof of Chinese subsidies.

“This is a political decision tomorrow,'' said another person briefed on the Commission's thinking. “It's basically saying, we have all the evidence we need, we don't need to launch an investigation,'' the person said.

The Huawei spokeswoman noted that the company had offered several times to meet the European Commission, but was rebuffed.

“We are open to talking with stakeholders. Because there are allegations, there are misunderstandings and misperceptions, that's why we are always keen to discuss with all the stakeholders,'' said Tina Tsai.

You May Like

Bleak China Economic Outlook Rattles Markets

Several key European stock indexes were down up to three percent, while US market indexes were off around 2.5 percent in afternoon trading More

DRC Tries Mega-Farms to Feed Population

Park at Boukanga Lonzo currently has 5,000 hectares under cultivation, crops stretching as far as eye can see, and is start of ambitious large-scale agriculture plan More

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Areas are spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, source of livelihood for fishermen and herders who have called the marshes home for generations More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.8916
JPY
USD
121.32
GBP
USD
0.6487
CAD
USD
1.3252
INR
USD
66.401

Rates may not be current.