Huawei Technologies has announced a major new commitment to the UK with a promise of procurement over the next five years of £3 billion.
On 1st February, Madam Sun Yafang, Chairwoman of Huawei met with the UK Prime Minister Theresa May in Beijing, and reaffirmed the company’s long-term commitment to the UK.
Huawei, a key investor in Europe, has announced that the company will procure a total of £3 billion in the UK over the next five years, helping UK companies to increase exports to China.
>See also: The UK is the digital capital of Europe: Tech Nation 2017
This new commitment builds on the pledge made by Huawei in 2012 to invest and procure £1.3 billion in the UK over the five years from 2013-17.
Madam Sun Yafang, Huawei Group, Chairwoman said: “Huawei values long-term partnership. The UK was one of the first international markets we entered, when we opened our first office there in 2001. We have now been working with our major customers in the UK for more than twelve years, helping to build a better connected UK. Over the coming years we look forward to continuing to collaborate with our customers and partners to help keep the UK at the very forefront of the digital age.”
The company now employs more than 1,500 people in the UK in 15 offices, including its head office in Green Park, Reading.
“Thanks to the drive and innovation of UK business, backed by this Government, trade between the UK and China is already at record levels,” said May. “This visit is an opportunity to further showcase the best of British and boost jobs and prosperity throughout the UK.”
>See also: UK increasingly reliant on foreign tech talent
International Trade Secretary, Dr Liam Fox, said “Huawei’s £3 billion announcement is yet another significant vote of confidence in our world-leading tech industry and I’m delighted to welcome their increased commitment to the UK. With 90% of global growth forecast to come from outside the EU, my international economic department is working to ensure Britain continues to benefit from the vast opportunities available as we leave the EU.”
Long-term customer partnerships
Huawei has worked with both BT Group and Vodafone Group for over 12 years, and these customer partnerships are central to the company’s success in the UK. Huawei has two joint innovation centres in the UK, one in Ipswich with BT, and one in Newbury with Vodafone. Huawei plans to continue making a significant contribution by exploring vital future technologies, including 5G, alongside its customers at these centres in the years ahead.
>See also: Technology: playing a ‘critical role’ in the UN’s SDGs
Research presence in the UK
Huawei has a strong focus on R&D and has three Research & Development (R&D) sites in the UK: the Centre for Integrated Photonics in Ipswich; Neul in Cambridge; and a centre in Bristol.
Huawei’s ongoing cooperation with UK universities has seen the company work with more than 20 different universities on over 100 individual research projects over the last five years. The company will continue to grow its investment in R&D and collaborate with UK universities over the next five years, with plans for an expanded range of topics to research and more university partnerships.