People attend the annual Huawei Connect event in Shanghai
INTERNATIONAL – Calling Europe one of its most important destinations of investment, Chinese telecom company Huanwei is stepping up cooperation with the continent under the principle of "in Europe, with Europe, for Europe," a company executive said here Wednesday.

Huawei has already been operating 26 research and development (R&D) labs in 14 European countries, and "by the end of last year, we've already had 12,200 employees in Europe, including about 2,000 people working on R&D," Austin Zhang, director of Huawei's Central and Eastern Europe and Nordic Region Public Affairs and Communications Department, told Xinhua at a press conference.

"Europe to Huawei is not only a center of sales, but also a regional center with comprehensive functions including sales, R&D, manufacturing, logistics and training," he said. Of the 50 commercial contracts Huawei signed worldwide on 5G networks, 28 went to Europe, said Yang Chaobin, president of Huawei 5G product line.

In Austria, the company is working with all three mobile operators, namely A1, Magenta and Hutchison Drei, which acquired nationwide 5G licenses at an auction in May.

Asked about the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between the United States and Poland to rigorously evaluating foreign 5G equipment providers, Zhang questioned the motive behind the US move.

It is not really about cyber security, but rather about politics and the plot to keep Huawei out, he said. "If you take a look at the US network, Huawei hasn't been involved in the construction of the network, but the price of the network in the US is three times that of Europe, and the US network is no more secure than that of Europe," he said.

"Keeping some suppliers out does not really resolve the issue of cyber security. Why the US is replicating its failure in Europe?" Zhang asked. The MoU is not a binding agreement, and by now it has not seen any substantial impact, he added. 

XINHUA