China’s Huawei announces small increase in new 5G customer base

Huawei said it expects revenue to exceed $100 billion this year. Above, a security guard at the entrance to Huawei’s global HQ in Shenzhen, China. (AFP)
Updated 18 December 2018
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China’s Huawei announces small increase in new 5G customer base

  • Huawei has shipped more than 10,000 base stations for the fifth generation of mobile communications
  • Huawei has been communicating with governments around the world regarding the independence of its operation

HONG KONG: Huawei Technologies said it has secured more than 25 commercial contracts for 5G, slightly above the 22 the Chinese technology giant had announced in November.

Huawei has shipped more than 10,000 base stations for the fifth generation of mobile communications, its rotating chairman Ken Hu told reporters at the company’s campus in Dongguan in southern China.

The company did not give any details on customers. The briefing comes a couple of weeks after Huawei’s chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou — also the daughter of its founder Ren Zhengfei — was arrested in Canada at the request of the United States.

She is awaiting possible extradition to the United States in a case that has roiled global markets.

This has added to the woes of the Chinese firm, which has already been virtually locked out of the US market and has been prohibited by Australia and New Zealand from building 5G networks on concerns its gear could facilitate Chinese spying.

 

The company has repeatedly insisted Beijing has no influence over it, a point it reiterated at the briefing.

Huawei has been communicating with governments around the world regarding the independence of its operation, it said.

Last week, sources said that Huawei planned to spend $2 billion to address British authorities’ securities concerns. Britain has been one of Huawei’s biggest international markets.

Huawei is the world’s largest supplier of telecommunications network equipment and second-biggest maker of smartphones, with revenue of about $92 billion last year. Unlike other big Chinese technology firms, it derives half of its revenue from overseas.

Huawei said it expected revenue to exceed $100 billion this year, a 8.7 percent rise from last year.

FASTFACTS

Huawei is the world’s largest supplier of telecommunications network equipment and second-biggest maker of smartphones, with revenue of about $92 billion last year.


Davos organizer WEF warns of growing risk of cyberattacks in Gulf

Updated 24 min 28 sec ago
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Davos organizer WEF warns of growing risk of cyberattacks in Gulf

  • Critical infrastructure such as power centers and water plants at particular risk, says expert
  • Report finds that unemployment is a major concern in Bahrain, Egypt, Morocco, Oman and Tunisia

LONDON: The World Economic Forum (WEF) has warned of the growing possibility of cyberattacks in the Gulf — with Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Qatar particularly vulnerable.

Cyberattacks were ranked as the second most important risk — after an “energy shock” — in the three Gulf states, according to the WEF’s flagship Global Risks Report 2019.

The report was released ahead of the WEF’s annual forum in Davos, Switzerland, which starts on Tuesday.

In an interview with Arab News, John Drzik, president of global risk and digital at professional services firm Marsh & McLennan said: “The risk of cyberattacks on critical infrastructure such as power centers and water plants is moving up the agenda in the Middle East, and in the Gulf in particular.”

Drzik was speaking on the sidelines of a London summit where WEF unveiled the report, which was compiled in partnership with Marsh and Zurich Insurance.

“Cyberattacks are a growing concern as the regional economy becomes more sophisticated,” he said.

“Critical infrastructure means centers where disablement could affect an entire society — for instance an attack on an electric grid.”

Countries needed to “upgrade to reflect the change in the cyber risk environment,” he added.

The WEF report incorporated the results of a survey taken from about 1,000 experts and decision makers.

The top three risks for the Middle East and Africa as a whole were found to be an energy price shock, unemployment or underemployment, and terrorist attacks.

Worries about an oil price shock were said to be particularly pronounced in countries where government spending was rising, said WEF. This group includes Saudi Arabia, which the IMF estimated in May 2018 had seen its fiscal breakeven price for oil — that is, the price required to balance the national budget — rise to $88 a barrel, 26 percent above the IMF’s October 2017 estimate, and also higher than the country’s medium-term oil-price target of $70–$80.

But that disclosure needed to be balanced with the fact that risk of “fiscal crises” dropped sharply in the WEF survey rankings, from first position last year to fifth in 2018.

The report said: “Oil prices increased substantially between our 2017 and 2018 surveys, from around $50 to $75. This represents a significant fillip for the fiscal position of the region’s oil producers, with the IMF estimating that each $10 increase in oil prices should feed through to an improvement on the fiscal balance of 3 percentage points of GDP.”

At national level, this risk of “unemployment and underemployment” ranked highly in Bahrain, Egypt, Morocco, Oman and Tunisia.
“Unemployment is a pressing issue in the region, particularly for the rapidly expanding young population: Youth unemployment averages around 25 percent and is close to 50 percent in Oman,” said the report.

Other countries attaching high prominence to domestic and regional fractures in the survey were Tunisia, with “profound
social instability” ranked first, and Algeria, where respondents ranked “failure of regional and global governance” first.

Looking at the global picture, WEF warned that weakened international co-operation was damaging the collective will to confront key issues such as climate change and environmental degradation.