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Huawei Adds On To Its Suit Against US Government, Claims U.S. Defense Bill Illegal

Huawei Adds On To Its Suit Against US Government, Claims U.S. Defense Bill Illegal
A motion for summary judgment has been filed by China’s Huawei Technologies Co Ltd in its case against the decision of the United States government to ban it from doing business in the country even as it tries to fight out a larger attempt by the Trump administration to isolate the company globally.
The lawsuit against the US government was brought by Huawei in March this year and in the latest addition to its plea, the company has asked the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas to declare as unconstitutional the 2019 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).
Last summer, the US congress passed the NDAA bill into law aimed at inflicting a broad ban on federal agencies and their contractors from utilizing any Huawei made equipment on the ground of threat to national security because of the alleged close ties of Huawei with the Chinese government. Such allegations have been repeatedly denied by Huawei and it has claimed that neither the Chinese government nor the military or the intelligence services have any influence in the functioning of the company.
The concerned U.S. court had agreed on a series of dates in September for the hearings of the new plea from both the parties, said Glen Nager, partner at Jones Day and lead external counsel for Huawei.
Earlier this month, Huawei, the largest telecom equipment maker of the world, was put on a so called ‘entity list’ by the U.S. commerce department which is effectively a trade blacklist which in effect prevents the Chinese firm from doing any business with any US company in terms of products or technology. This has had a disrupting effect on the global tech sector.
The potential ways of fighting the ban on the company by the US through its entity list are being reviewed by Huawei, said the company’s chief legal officer, Song Liuping, on Wednesday. The ban has significantly impacted the activities and business of more than 1,200 suppliers of the company and is poised to impact over 3 billion end customers of Huawei in 170 countries, Liuping said.
A “very dangerous precedent” is set by the Trump administration by its use of administrative orders and laws to target a single company, Song said. “Today it is telecom and Huawei, tomorrow it could be your company, your industry, your customers,” he told reporters at Huawei’s headquarters in Shenzhen.
The ban on Huawei was preceded by an escalation of the ongoing trade war between the US and China by US president Donald Trump by increasing of tariffs from 10 per cent to 25 per cent for Chinese goods imported into the US worth about $200 billion. Earlier, Huawei’s chief financial officer who is also the daughter of the founder of the company, was arrested in Canada on charges of bank fraud and corporate theft made by the US.
More recently, a 90 day partial relief period has been provided to Huawei by the US administration. However, the Chinese firm has always denied that any threat ot national security is posed by its products.
The boundaries of the normal market competition had been breached by the executive order and entity list of the US, said Vincent Pang, Huawei’s senior vice president and head of corporate communications. “This could lead to the start of the fragmentation of the global tech ecosystem and standards,” Pang said on Wednesday at Huawei’s HQ.

Christopher J. Mitchell

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