Karl Song’s Statement at the Huawei Press Conference on December 5, 2019
Good morning everyone.
You’ve heard the legal arguments from Dr. Song and Mr. Glen Nager. But there’s also a more personal side to this story.
Karl Song, Vice President of Huawei’s Corporate Communications Department
I still remember the first time I set foot in Scobey, Montana. It’s a small town of around 1,000 residents near the U.S.-Canada border, where I was visiting a client. The CEO greeted me in his office and said one sentence I still remember, “Welcome to No-where.”
I understood what he meant. It took me 7 or 8 hours to get there from Dallas, including a flight change in Denver and a 3-hour drive into town. It’s definitely “No-man’s land.”
For years, remote parts of the U.S. had poor connectivity. You couldn’t make a phone call when your car – or your tractor – broke down. If you called for an ambulance on your cell phone, you got no signal.
Today, things are much better – partly because of Huawei. We’ve built networks in places where other vendors would not go. They were too remote, or the terrain was difficult, or there just wasn’t a big enough population.
Other vendors saw those communities, and wrote them off as “low-value customers.”
But for Huawei, there’s no such thing.
In the U.S., we sell equipment to 40 small wireless and wireline operators. They connect schools, hospitals, farms, homes, community colleges, and emergency services.
In just a moment, you’ll hear from some of those rural operators. You’ll hear them say how they trusted us, relied on us, and partnered with us, when other vendors had turned their backs on them.
These small wireless and wireline operators give their communities a digital lifeline …
But that lifeline depends on the Universal Service Fund.
The FCC’s rule would cut off the operators from the fund. It could even force them to rip out equipment they’ve already installed. This would cost hundreds of millions of dollars. Some
And the really heart-breaking thing is: Ripping out Huawei gear won’t make U.S. networks any safer.
Our competitors make a lot of their equipment in China, some of them even have joint ventures with Chinese state-owned companies. Their equipment is used widely in America. One FCC Commissioner said roughly 40% of all U.S. networks contain equipment that was made in China. Targeting Huawei will not change that situation at all.
So, in addition to the legal issues we’re discussing today, please remember this:
Our customers in the US provide the vital connectivity to real people, in real communities. And those people rely on Huawei to stay connected.
No one else wanted to work with these communities -- they were too small; too hard to get to; not profitable enough.
But Huawei came through for them. Because that’s what we do. And that's what we are fighting for today.