Huawei in line with EU data laws as firm creates 50 new jobs in IFSC
Chinese telecoms company Huawei unveiled its new research and development offices in Dublin's IFSC yesterday which will also lead to the creation of 50 new jobs.
The company has been linked to the Chinese military and in the US concerns have been raised in relation to data privacy by the deputy defence secretary, Robert Work.
Speaking at the jobs announcement, the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton said that it was a win for Ireland and that Huawei operates within European Union regulations.
"Ireland's data concerns are handled through Europe. There is an agreement which was in place between the US and Europe in terms of data exchange, that is now going to have to be re-engineered," Mr Bruton said. "There is a deadline for January, but these are issues of much wider policy import and clearly those who are engaged in protecting privacy and all the rest of it, they have in place criteria and business models in which businesses must operate and Huawei must operate in those, the same way as any other company.
"They operate throughout Europe, they respect European laws everywhere they operate and that is the way they do business," minister Bruton said.
The opening of Huawei's R&D centre represents another investment from Asia and Mr Bruton said that the move highlights Ireland's ability to attract business from the Far East.
"It's a great addition to our capability as a country and also shows we can win investment from Asia in critical areas for the growth of those companies and I think that's a good flagship. As you know the IDA has set a target of stepping up the number of investments from that part of the world to make Ireland a gateway for such investors so we see this as a very important win," the minister said.
The president at the European Research Institute at Huawei, Zhou Hong, said that the new facility will help nurture talent in Ireland. "Each year, Huawei invests at least 10pc of its global revenue in R&D.
"The opening of our newest Dublin facility highlights our long term dedication to investment and opportunities in Ireland's technology sector.
"The facility will tap into Dublin's growing clusters of cloud and technology businesses, nurturing future talent and providing additional new opportunities for highly-skilled professionals," Mr Hong said.
The chief executive at the IDA, Martin Shanahan, said that the company's decision to expand was an endorsement of the country's talent pool.
Huawei, which has been operating in the Irish market since May 2004, operates under a rotating ceo. It currently works with all the major telecoms providers in Ireland, with its products and services now serving approximately two million people in the country.
The company's first Irish R&D centre opened in 2011, in Athlone, and has so far contributed €35m in R&D to the Irish economy this year.
Huawei recently expanded its R&D investment in Ireland through the acquisition of Amartus, the Dublin-based cloud service provider, in July 2015.