March 05, 2020

Huawei or the Highway

Source: Harvard Political Review

Journalist: Amy Zhou

“Huawei” — The name at the center of the trade war between the United States and China, and the foremost player in the battle over 5G. Recently becoming the second-largest seller of mobile phones behind Samsung, beating Apple for the first time in 2018, the Chinese telecommunications company has grown in popularity not just in traditionally Chinese-allied nations but also in Europe, where many of the United States’ allies reside. It already is built into much of Europe’s 4G infrastructure, and while much of the discourse around 5G has surrounded the United States and China, Europe is primed to become the central battleground.

The United States vs. China

In 2019, citing Huawei actions that “are contrary to U.S. national security or foreign policy interests,” the United States placed Huawei on its “entity list.” Companies on this list are banned from buying components and services from US-based companies, and as such this list is sometimes referred to as the “death penalty,” as being on it makes it very difficult for companies to expand and survive. In particular, it is likely that the United States hoped this action would slow Huawei’s growth. Since Huawei phones have become extremely popular in Europe, by withholding access to Google’s software, the United States may hope to make Huawei phones less attractive to Western consumers that expect to be able to use Android on their phones.

Read the full article and more in the Harvard Political Review.


  • Peter Harrell

    Former Adjunct Senior Fellow, Energy, Economics and Security Program

    Peter Harrell is a former adjunct senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security. He is a leading expert on U.S. economic statecraft, including sanctions, export cont...