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Global Times

Huawei has no military ties: spokespersons

Global Times

By Chen Qingqing in Shenzhen and Liu Xuanzun in Beijing Source:Global Times Published: 2019/6/27 22:18:40

Defense Ministry dismisses foreign reports of 'employee collaboration'

Huawei is a private company with no military ties, China's Ministry of National Defense reiterated on Thursday in response to US media reports that claim the company worked with the Chinese military.

The Defense Ministry does not comment on normal academic research, but "as known to all, Huawei is a private company that independently develops itself. It does not have any so-called military ties," said Defense Ministry spokesperson Ren Guoqiang at a routine press conference on Thursday.

The response came after a Bloomberg report on Thursday said Huawei's employees collaborate with the People's Liberation Army (PLA) on research of artificial intelligence (AI) and radio communication.

The report claimed that Huawei workers have teamed with members of various organs of the PLA on at least 10 research projects in the past decade.

It went on to speculate there could be more classified projects.

Senior company officials also denied the reports, saying they are not aware of its employees' research projects for China's armed forces.

"Huawei is an ICT civil product provider. We don't customize products or research for the military," Song Liuping, the company's chief legal officer, told a press conference at the company's headquarters in Shenzhen.

The Bloomberg report claimed that one of the projects, allegedly conducted by a Huawei employee and a PLA hospital, features methods to help doctors better detect heart signals.

"Huawei is not aware of its employees publishing research papers in their personal capacity," Bloomberg quoted Huawei spokesman Glenn Schloss as saying in a messaged statement.

"Huawei does not have any R&D collaboration or partnerships with PLA-affiliated institutions," he said. "Huawei only develops and produces communications products that conform to civil standards worldwide, and does not customize R&D products for the military," the Huawei spokesman said.

Ren Zhengfei, founder of the company, has a military background, which shaped his management style but also sparked doubts over Huawei's relations with the Chinese government.

The 76-year-old entrepreneur has been repeatedly saying that the company's business model should not be confused with ideology.

Chinese State Councilor and Defense Minister Wei Fenghe said during his visit to Singapore for the Shangri-La Dialogue earlier in June that Huawei is a private company and people should not think it is related to the military only because the company's boss used to serve in the military.

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