Huawei Will Survive U.S.-China Trade Wars
After decades of growth, U.S. sanctions dealt a serious blow to China’s private telecom giant. The company will nevertheless survive on the strength of China’s domestic market.
The Chinese corporation Huawei has been the world’s largest telecommunications equipment maker since 2012, when it overtook Sweden’s Ericsson.1 Its revenue rose from $35.5 billion in 2013 to $136.7 billion in 2020, while its workforce increased to nearly 200,000.2 Huawei is China’s largest corporate spender on research and development, spending $17 billion in 2020. This was more than the three major Chinese tech companies—Alibaba, Tencent, and Baidu—combined. Its R&D spending is bested only by Amazon and Alphabet, the parent company of Google. Huawei is also one of the world’s largest privately held companies: it is legally wholly owned by a holding company, which is in turn 99% owned by a “trade union committee” and 1% owned by its 78-year-old founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei.3