Saturday, 15 December, 2018

Huawei CFO arrested, faces extradition to U.S.

London skyline The FTSE 100 was called 71 points lower
Orlando Vargas | 06 December, 2018, 22:49

The Globe and Mail reported earlier Wednesday that she was arrested on suspicion of violating US trade sanctions on Iran.

The expectation did not keep the price of oil from falling, however, as investors focused on the potential economic disruption from any escalation in the US-China trade dispute.

Stock markets in Europe and Asia also felt the brunt of the arrest with a sea of red flashing across the board after being dragged down by sharp losses in technology shares. Hong Kong's Hang Seng plunged 2.5% overnight, while European stock markets declined sharply as well.

"Markets are anxious by numerous things: global economic growth, rising interest rates and the US-China trade war". The U.S. government has largely banned the use of Huawei equipment by its agencies, and intelligence officials have warned that Beijing may have the ability to tap into the firm's equipment to spy on users.

Both Huawei and ZTE Corp. have faced trouble with the US and other governments over dealings with Iran and fears the Chinese companies' equipment might be used for spying.

Good morning, and welcome to our rolling coverage of the world economy, the financial markets, the eurozone and business. Huawei has repeatedly insisted Beijing has no influence over it.

Canadian authorities said Wednesday that they have arrested the chief financial officer of China's Huawei Technologies for possible extradition to the United States. Investors have now lost confidence in the long-term effectiveness of the agreement struck between Presidents Trump and Xi at the G20. Is the timing of the arrest deliberate?

Huawei said in a statement: "The company has been provided very little information regarding the charges and is not aware of any wrongdoing by Ms. Meng (Wanzhou)".

Aly Song / Reuters A man walks by a Huawei logo at a shopping mall in Shanghai, China, Dec. 6.

China urged Canada and the U.S. to "clarify" the reason for Meng's arrest and demanded her release.

Benchmark U.S. crude slid 2.9 percent to $51.38 a barrel in NY.

Officials for the Canadian and U.S. Justice Departments did not immediately respond to a request for comment. A spokesman for the USA attorney's office in Brooklyn also declined to comment.

Eric Harwit, an Asian studies professor at the University of Hawaii at Manoa who has written extensively on Chinese telecoms, said the arrest was not just about sanctions violations but the bigger picture of the U.S. worrying about Chinese hi-tech firms becoming rivals to American companies in the future.

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The European Union warned that it would retaliate with tariffs on USA products. Trump added China would roll back tariffs of 40% on cars.


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If DNA from cancer cells is then added, it sticks to the nanoparticles in such a way that the water retains its original colour. Additionally, the research was supported by a National Breast Cancer Foundation grant to advance cancer diagnosis testing.


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Led by Saudi Arabia, OPEC's crude oil production has risen by 4.1 percent since mid-2018, to 33.31 million barrels per day (bpd). But Washington gave sanctions waivers to some buyers of Iranian crude, further raising fears of an oil glut next year.


"If someone from the United States is hoping to use threats to an individual's personal safety in order to add weight in the talks, then they have most certainly miscalculated", he said.

Investors will fear that the shock detention of such a significant business figure could easily anger the Chinese government, and potentially scupper plans to buy more U.S. goods.

No other details have been given, but The Globe and Mail reported that she was detained for attempting to evade USA sanctions on Iran, citing a Canadian source with knowledge of the matter.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $52.57 per barrel at 0109 GMT, down 32 cents, or 0.6 percent, from their last close. "Actually it hurts them to make life difficult" for USA companies.

However, the topic ranked only 31st among trending items on Weibo as of Thursday afternoon, with many discussion threads apparently blocked, which is not unusual on China's heavily censored Internet.

What has Canada said about the arrest?

Jasper Lawler, head of research at London Capital Group, responded: "Traders have quickly moved out of riskier assets reflecting nerves that the arrest is likely to escalate tensions between the U.S. and China once again". Finance Minister Bill Morneau was recently in Beijing for meetings in which "the two sides reaffirmed their commitment to deepening and expanding the Canada-China economic and trade relationship".

The U.S. previously banned ZTE, a Huawei competitor, for violating a sanctions settlement over transactions with Iran and North Korea. The company's handset sales have all but come to a halt after AT&T backed out on a deal earlier this year.

Huawei said it complies with all laws and rules where it operates, including export controls and sanctions of the United Nations, the USA and European Union.

The arrest occurred on the same day that US President Donald Trump and Xi struck the trade war truce at a summit in Argentina.

The detention of Meng, who takes her family name from her mother and has also used the English first names "Cathy" and "Sabrina", has once again thrown the spotlight on Huawei at a time of heightened global concerns over electronic security. "Huawei of course is a global player, and has made major inroads in developing countries, and even developed countries", Harwit said.

Meng's arrest drew a quick reaction in Washington.

Meng's arrest also threatened to inflame disagreements over Iran and Trump's decision to break with other governments and re-impose sanctions over the country's nuclear development.

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