EU to investigate telecommunications equipment imports from China

The investigation will likely target Chinese companies Huawei Technologies and ZTE

The European Union is preparing to investigate the imports of mobile networking gear from China for anti-competitive practices, a move that's likely targeted at telecommunications equipment companies Huawei Technologies and ZTE.

China has also warned the EU against any protectionist or restrictive measures.

The investigation will focus on China's alleged dumping and subsidizing of telecommunications-related products, EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Cucht said in a statement on Wednesday. No companies were specified, but the commission had reportedly determined last year that both Huawei and ZTE received preferential financing from the Chinese government.

The European Commission, however, will first try to negotiate with Chinese authorities to reach an "amicable solution" before launching the investigation. It estimates that Chinese exports of telecommunications equipment to the EU reach a value of over €1 billion per year.

"We hope the EU will proceed with protecting the stable development of trade relations between China and the EU, and not take protectionist measures or restrictive actions." China's foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei said on Wednesday.

Huawei responded on Thursday, stating that the company "plays fair" in all markets, and wins business via its technology and services, not through pricing or subsidies.

"Huawei currently has broad cooperation with European enterprises in the field of innovation, which is creating considerable value for all parties," the company said in an email. In 2011, Huawei purchased €2.9 billion in products and services from Europe.

ZTE has yet to receive a formal notice from the EU, but it denied dumping products or receiving illegal subsidies from the Chinese authorities, said company spokesman David Dai Shu on Thursday. While the company does receive some financial support from China, the subsidies are small and on par with the backing other European vendors receive from their home countries, he added.

ZTE, however, said its market share of Europe's telecom infrastructure business is small, and expects the investigation to have little affect on the company.

"From our point of view, we hope the (EU) government will establish a healthy and fair environment for all vendors," he said.

The European Commission, the EU's executive body, is launching the anti-dumping and anti-subsidy investigation "ex officio" on its own initiative, without an official complaint from an EU industry. Huawei said this was an unprecedented move.

The Commission described the option to investigate ex officio as "particularly important as it offers a 'shield' when the risk of retaliation against European companies asking for trade defence instruments is high."

If the investigation is carried out, inspected products would cover mobile telecommunication networks used by carriers to transmit and receive voice and data.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags regulationtelecommunicationZTEHuawei Technologies

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Michael Kan

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?