Chinese telecoms company Huawei Technologies has reaffirmed its focus on Europe but has warned that the continent needs to do more to increase its attractiveness.

Haifeng Ling, Huawei’s vicepresident for the Europe, explained that while many saw Europe as an old continent with sluggish economies and crippling deficits, his company viewed Europe as a “refreshed and charming lady with an old history”.


He said: “The size of the [European] market makes it hugely important for us. There are opportunities everywhere, but more needs to be done to increase its attractiveness and boost consumption and growth.”

Mr Ling would not specify the areas in which the firm might be targeting for its future growth strategy in Europe, but he did say that he came away from the 2010 World Investment Conference at La Baule, France, with the impression that Europe and its industries were heading in the right economic direction, although he wished more could be done to encourage entrepreneurialism on the continent.

He added that the mood of the conference seemed to affirm that other corporations remained committed to current and future investments in Europe. Huawei, which is the largest networking and telecoms equipment supplier in China, has been making waves with its investments and expansion into Europe.

Some of Europe’s more established telecoms firms have grumbled that Huawei has an unfair advantage, especially when it comes to costs. Some have even gone as far as to claim that the Chinese manufacturer has stolen Western technology, a charge it vigorously denies.

Despite Mr Ling’s affirmations, Huawei has appeared far more active in emerging markets than in Europe in recent months and has also been rumoured to be looking at ways to expand in the US market. In July, Huawei began selling mobile phones in India and it has also hired several US advisers to look at opportunities for the company in the country.