Verizon CEO says not depending on China’s Huawei

Verizon CEO Hans Vestberg said the telecom operator is not depending on China’s Huawei for executing its network strategy.
Verizon 5G Home Internet
Verizon is currently in the process of rolling out its 5G network across the nation. Verizon is sourcing 5G network from Ericsson and Nokia.

“We don’t use any Huawei equipment, and we have no impact from the Chinese trade war,” Hans Vestberg told CNBC.

The statement from Verizon CEO assumes significance because several telecom operators in Europe are worried about the cost of telecom network from Ericsson and Nokia. Huawei is one of the low-cost network suppliers to telecom industry.

Hans Vestberg said that he’s not worried about the ongoing U.S.-China trade war impacting the company’s success in the United States.

“We are executing our strategy with our Western European vendors,” Vestberg told CNBC’s Julia Boorstin from the annual Sun Valley media conference in Idaho. “It seems that you can do that without Huawei.”

In May, the Donald Trump administration effectively blacklisted China-based Huawei from doing business in the U.S., citing national security concerns. While President Donald Trump agreed last month to allow Huawei to purchase some U.S. commercial products as an incentive to restart trade talks with China, the White House remains adamant that the move is not a total reprieve.

The Donald Trump administration is worried about Huawei products getting embedded into U.S. networks and the potential for them to be used by China’s communist government for spying. Huawei has repeatedly denied that would ever happen.

Reuters reported that Verizon had received unsolicited interest in Yahoo Finance but did not entertain the conversations. Last year, Verizon wrote down the value of its media assets by $4.6 billion. Verizon spent a combined $9.2 billion to buy AOL and Yahoo in 2015 and 2017, respectively.