Arrest triggers fresh doubts about Trump's ability to deliver on China deal

Man walks by a Huawei logo at a shopping mall in Shanghai

Man walks by a Huawei logo at a shopping mall in Shanghai

The arrest of Meng Wanzhou, a top executive at China's Huawei Technologies Co Ltd and daughter of the founder and CEO, jolted the global business community on Thursday and raised fears that a truce in the U.S.

A Chinese government statement said Meng broke no USA or Canadian laws and demanded Canada "immediately correct the mistake" and release her.

He also said Meng's legal rights must be ensured, adding that neither Canadian nor American officials had so far responded to China's concerns. China's embassy in Canada has described the actions as having "seriously harmed human rights".

The arrested Huawei executive, Meng, is set to appear in court Friday in Vancouver, B.C. for a bail hearing. The Globe and Mail newspaper, citing law enforcement sources, reported that Meng is suspected of trying to evade USA sanctions on Iran.

The company has reportedly been under investigation since 2016 for allegedly shipping products from the U.S.to Iran and other countries in violation of US export and sanctions laws.

Ye Tan, an independent Chinese economist, said Meng's arrest could be used as a "bargaining chip" in the trade talks.

Beijing asked Washington and Ottawa to explain the reason for Meng's arrest, said a Foreign Ministry spokesman, Geng Shuang.

Top British and New Zealand telecom providers have banned Huawei from their 5G networks, as did the Australian government.

Canada was bracing for a fallout in relations with China, which has been increasingly willing to punish countries it sees as countering its interests.

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The "message is clear - the USA is closing the borders to many Chinese technology companies", said Neil Campling, co-head Global Thematic Group at Mirabaud Securities.

"Huawei is China's most powerful, most prized company", said one USA lobbyist who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive matters.

ZTE is China's second-largest telecommunications equipment maker and relies on USA components for its smart phones and networking equipment.

"This is something that we get from the Justice Department", he said.

US National Security Adviser John Bolton has also said he knew about the arrest in advance.

Canadian officials said she faces extradition to the U.S. Meng is expected to face charges in the Eastern District of NY in Brooklyn.

One report in the New York Times said the United States commerce and treasury departments had subpoenaed the firm over suspected violation of sanctions against both Iran and North Korea.

Meng is Huawei's chief financial officer and the daughter of the company's founder.

The U.S.is anxious about the extent to which Chinese-made equipment is used in the telecommunications sectors of countries that host American military bases. "We are awaiting the next tweets from Washington to correct this latest swoon in the stock market".

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The case that adds to technology tensions with Washington and threatens to complicate trade talks.

In the latest development that is sure to upset the newly-formed trade truce between the U.S. and China, a senior Huawei exec has been arrested in Canada and now faces extradition to the US.

In its statement Wednesday, Huawei said the company complies with all laws and regulations in the countries where it operates, including applicable export control, sanction laws and regulations of the United Nations, the United States and the European Union.

"China firmly opposes all forms of cyber attack and cracks down on them in accordance with law", he furthered.

Officials discovered ZTE was selling its products with US technology to Iran and North Korea.

The Chief Financial Officer of Huawei Technologies has been arrested in Canada. Reuters published an investigation nearly six years ago about her and Huawei's ties to a company call Skycom that tried to sell Hewlett-Packard computer equipment to an Iranian mobile-phone operator, in contravention of those sanctions.

Huawei is the world's second biggest smartphone manufacturer and is involved with major telecoms projects around the globe.

"It could jeopardize all of this", Sui said of the arrest.

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