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Interview: Huawei ban could deal blow to U.S. firms, consumers: expert

May 28, 2019


Abstract : The U.S. government's ban on Huawei could end up hurting U.S. businesses and consumers badly, said an Argentine expert on international relations.

BUENOS AIRES, May 26 (Xinhua) -- The U.S. government's ban on Huawei could end up hurting U.S. businesses and consumers badly, said an Argentine expert on international relations.

Lucas Gualda, a member of the Argentine Council for International Relations, an academic institution, told Xinhua that the decision to limit U.S. companies from doing business with Huawei is not just "unfounded," but also likely to backfire, leading to unintended negative consequences.

"This measure could cost it (the United States) dearly, because let's not forget that China is one of the most important markets for Android," the mobile operating system employed by Huawei and developed by U.S. tech giant Google, Gualda said.

"In China, there are more than a billion mobile devices. It's truly a very important market," he stressed.

The United States cited security concerns to justify the ban, but Gualda sees competition as the main worry keeping Washington up at night.

"Huawei is a direct target of the United States because it really represents direct competition for any technology manufacturers in the world," he said.

"While it appears to be a threat, it is really an opportunity for China to make a technological leap, (and) to develop its own operating system," said Gualda, who also teaches corporate social responsibility at Maimonides University in Buenos Aires.

What's more, China's technological progress can help not only the Asian country to prosper but also its development partners around the globe, owing to Chinese investment in infrastructure and other projects, he said.

"Africa has experienced a technological leap," Gualda said. "Today, the continent has seen enormous development in trade and electronic payment thanks to Chinese investment in infrastructure, and Chinese companies."

The expert also noted that in general U.S.-China trade tensions are bound to cause "collateral damage" to the United States and other countries.

"The consequences of the conflict between the United States and China are global, leading to increased uncertainties in international markets," he said.

"What we see is a country that constantly threatens the economic stability of (other) countries it claims to be helping, and a nation that's offering the countries of the South a unique opportunity to achieve economic development," Gualda said.

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Keyword: Huawei

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