Oxford University suspends Huawei donations and sponsorships | 2019-01-18

Oxford University suspends Huawei donations and sponsorships


18th January, 2019 10:35:42 printer

Oxford University suspends Huawei donations and sponsorships


The University of Oxford has suspended new donations and sponsorships from Chinese telecoms giant Huawei.


The firm is facing accusations from the US and other countries that its equipment could be used for espionage.


Huawei has denied those claims, saying it doesn't pose a spying risk.


The US is also reportedly investigating Huawei for "stealing trade secrets" from US businesses, and has accused it of contravening sanctions by lying about its business in Iran.


Oxford University said it had decided on 8 January that it will "not pursue new funding opportunities... at present" with Huawei.


"Huawei has been notified of the decision, which the university will keep under review. The decision applies both to the funding of research contracts and of philanthropic donations."


"The decision has been taken in the light of public concerns raised in recent months surrounding UK partnerships with Huawei."


It added that it hoped those matters can be resolved shortly.


The BBC understands the university is concerned about any potential government restrictions on the telecoms giant in the future.


Oxford added that it would continue with its existing research contracts where Huawei funding has been received or committed.


"We currently have two such on-going projects, with a combined funding from Huawei of £692,000. Both projects were approved under the university's regulatory processes before the current levels of uncertainty arose," it said.


A Huawei spokesman said: "We have not been informed of this decision."



Huawei, which has about 1,500 employees in the UK, collaborates with a number of universities in the country, including Cambridge, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Imperial College London, Manchester and York.


The Chinese firm has made a $7.5m donation to the 5G Innovation Centre at the University of Surrey, and more than $1m to the Cambridge University Computer Laboratory.