Huawei to open £125m R&D centre in the UK

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Announcement made during Chancellor George Osbourne’s visit to the manufacturer’s facilities in China, with opening forming part of the manufacturer’s £1.25 billion investment into the UK

Huawei will open a new $200 million (£125 million) R&D centre in the UK as part of its $2 billion (£1.25 billion) investment into the region. The location of the new centre will be confirmed at a later date.

It will focus on fields such as optoelectronics, device design and software development, which Huawei said will benefit its customers in 140 global markets.

Huawei will employ a total of 300 staff in high-tech R&D positions in the UK by 2017. Currently, it employs over 80 engineers in its existing UK R&D office in Ipswich.

The announcement was made by Huawei CEO and founder Ren Zhengfei during a meeting with Chancellor George Osborne at the manufacturer’s headquarters in Shenzhen, China.

Osborne hosted a delegation of 20 UK high-tech companies, who were visiting as part of a three-day trip to China. They also met teams from Huawei’s departments including R&D, procurement and corporate development to explore more opportunities for commercial cooperation.

A number of companies comprising the delegation already work closely with Huawei, including telecoms provider BT.

Zhengfei said: “The UK is home to some of the best high-tech professionals in the world. Their creativity is a major asset to our R&D efforts, helping us produce the most advanced and competitive telecoms and broadband services available.  Combined with an open and free-trade economy, this makes it a very good investment environment for Huawei. I have every confidence in Huawei’s future in the UK.”

Osborne added: “One of the most exciting opportunities for collaboration between Britain and China in the next step of our relationship is between our cutting edge, high-tech companies. So I am delighted to be visiting Huawei’s headquarters with leaders of some of Britain’s most entrepreneurial tech companies to welcome Huawei’s investment into the UK.”

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