Disclosures filed Wednesday showed that Huawei Technologies ramped up its spending on U.S. lobbyists over the past quarter as part of its efforts to counter government-imposed sanctions.
The company spent around $1.06 million over the second quarter of 2021 - a $180,000 increase over the first quarter of this year. The funds were spent on lobbying for the company's business to find ways around the government's ban on its equipment. The ban has mostly left Huawei out of billions of dollars in projects funded by Congress-approved infrastructure programs.
Last month, U.S. President Joe Biden had extended a Trump-era executive order that barred American companies from using Huawei's telecommunications equipment because of national security concerns. The extension meant that Huawei still couldn't access any of the planned $65 billion Congress plans to spend on expanding the nation's internet infrastructure.
According to disclosure reports, Huawei had hired three new lobbying companies run by current and former politicians. The report said Huawei had hired former Republican Representative Lee Terry, Glenn LeMunyon - a former aide to past House Majority Whip Tom DeLay - and Stephen Binhak - a former prosecutor during the Clinton administration.
"Huawei has engaged with these firms to generate a better understanding between Huawei and the U.S. government," sources familiar with the matter said.
Terry and Le Munyon's companies were hired to tackle issues related to Huawei's telecommunications equipment and infrastructure. Meanwhile, Binhak's company was hired to lobby on issues related to the U.S. imposed economic sanctions and the annual defense spending bill.
Since the U.S. imposed sanctions against the Chinese company, Huawei has been struggling to gain a foothold in the country. The company's sales in the U.S. and other western markets plummeted following the implementation of the restrictions by former President Donald Trump.
The U.S. accuses Huawei of using its technologies to spy on foreign countries on behalf of the Chinese Communist Party. In 2019, Trump banned American technology companies such as Google, Qualcomm and Intel from doing business with Huawei. The U.S. had also urged its European allies to boycott Huawei's products from their respective 5G network projects.