Huawei Technologies, which is seeking to acquire a minority stake network equipment vendor 3Com, has reacted angrily to attempts by US politicians to scupper the deal.
Last September it was revealed that US private equity firm Bain Capital was seeking to acquire approximately 83.5 percent of 3Com, with Huawei taking the remaining 16.5 percent. The deal is estimated to be worth around $2.2bn.
However, the news was greeted with unease in the United States. The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), which can block these type of deals, is scheduled to finish its scrutiny before the end of February.
The deal is also coming under attack, most notably from Thaddeus McCotter, chairman of the House Republican Policy Committee, whose own website describes him as a "vocal critic of Communist China's Human Rights violations and the attempted merger of China's Huawei Technologies with 3Com, an American company responsible with Pentagon cyber defence."
Last month, McCotter urged US authorities to deny Huawei any part in the 3Com deal, describing the existing buy-out proposal as a "stealth assault on America’s national security". Before that, he said Huawei's take in 3Com would "gravely compromise" US national security, in a House floor speech in October.
"The US Department of Defense uses 3Com intrusion detection products, and Chinese hackers have targeted the agency," McCotter has said previously.
"Given this and other instances of communist China's persistent cyber warfare against us, approving this sale would be an abject abdication of CIFUS' duty to protect America's vital defence technologies from enemy acquisition," he said.
However, these attempts to derail the deal on national security grounds has prompted an angry reaction from the Chinese company, with Xu Zhijun, chief marketing officer at Huawei Technologies, telling the Financial Times newspaper that the concerns expressed by some US lawmakers were "bullshit."
The newspaper says that when asked about the concerns that the deal could endanger US national security, Xu said through an interpreter: "That would be bullshit." Pressed to clarify his remarks further, Xu added: "Because we only just take 16.5 percent."
Xu also took the opportunity to point out that that 3Com supplies products to Chinese telecom operators. "Cisco's equipment is everywhere in China," he told the Financial Times.
"If the US Government is concerned about Huawei, if some of the lawmakers are concerned about Huawei, Cisco is everywhere within China. Who should be more concerned?"
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