Huawei Technologies Co assured the public on Wednesday that its indigenous fifth generation technologies and solutions are "not at all impacted by the ongoing sanction" from Washington, and the company guarantees timely delivery for customers who have signed or are preparing to sign 5G procurement contracts.
The Chinese telecom equipment giant said it is optimistic about maintaining its large lead in the 5G competition and pledged to continue investment in the superfast network, which is set to revolutionize industries and transform lives.
"Huawei has already invested $4 billion in 5G, and that investment strategy will not change," said Hu Houkun, rotating chairman of Huawei, in a news conference in Shanghai.
"We will continue to maintain our leadership position and continuously deliver better performance and lower product costs, helping our customers deploy 5G products."
Hu forecast total shipment of Huawei 5G base stations at 500,000 by year's end, up from the current 150,000, which would "put it in a very leading role, compared with all other vendors in the industry".
Huawei was placed last month on the United States Commerce Department's Entity List, which bars it from buying parts and components from US companies without US government approval. On May 21, Huawei was granted a 90-day general license allowing it to keep existing networks and issue updates to existing phones, tablets and other devices through mid-August.
Hu dismissed concerns that the restrictions would keep Huawei from making timely delivery of products, saying business operations at Huawei are largely intact. The company is ramping up efforts to reduce any effect on supply.
"I can tell you clearly that Huawei's 5G will not be affected at all. For contracts we have already signed and contracts we are going to sign, we have all the capability to ensure delivery for our customers."
Hu said performance indicators show some alternative supplies — including self-developed solutions or sourcing from non-US partners — to be of superior quality. Hu also said Huawei would still choose to buy from US vendors should sanctions be lifted.
Huawei's deep technology reserve and wealth of patents minimize the effect of sanctions on its 5G portfolio, said James Yan, research director at Counterpoint Technology Market Research. He cited the possibility of Huawei turning things around by trading patents or business models for other critical or much-needed technologies.
"Many operators have been using Huawei's equipment and technologies for quite some time. They will find it hard to quit using Huawei products and find equally competitive alternatives in a short time. It will be too costly a price to pay," Yan said.
Hu has said many European partners think ending use of Huawei equipment would delay the 5G rollout in their markets by about two years, representing "a huge loss for everyone".