Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd



Semiconductors, Electronics, Electrical Engineering, Technology Hardware & Equipment



Huawei Technologies Co. LTD Banxuegang Industrial Park, Buji Longgang, Shenzhen 518129, P.R.C




  • #14 World’s Best Employers 2020
  • #93 World’s Most Valuable Brands 2020
  • 2019 EcoVadis CSR Gold Rating
  • No. 1 in the 2019 CSR Development Index China’s Top 100 Private Companies
  • Outstanding Company in Green Supply




Alan Aicken


  • Zero Accident Award by Indonesia’s Ministry of Manpower
  • Best Company with Innovation in Corporate Social Responsibility
  • 2019 Best Practice Award in recognition of Huawei’s progress towards SDGs from Global Compact Network China



Report created by Cec Ehrhard

Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd

SECTIONS :  Sustainability    Evaluation  •  Progress  •  Watch  •  Overview


Company Activity

Huawei is a consumer electronics and technology company. Huawei was founded in 1987 by Ren Zhengfei, originally manufacturing phone switches (SPC).

The company has expanded into mobile networks, consulting and managing services, and smartphones, tablets, computers. Huawei has several subsidiaries: Honor, Amrtus, Caliopa, Chinasoft International, FutureWei Technologies, HexaTier, HiSilicon, and iSoftStone. In the summer of 2020, Huawei became the leading smartphone brand over Samsung and Apple.

There have been market issues relating to the United States because the US and allies do not do business with Chinese telecommunications companies like Huawei.  The company is “employee-owned”; there has been controversy over the ownership of the company along with its allegations of espionage, fraud related to sanctions in Iran, intellectual property theft, forced labor, and collusion with the Communist Party apparatus. There continue to be restrictions not allowing US companies to do business with Huawei.

Company Sustainability Activity

As part of their commitment to technology for a better planet, Huawei will invest more in the following three areas:

  • Reducing carbon emissions: their green ICT solutions will enable industries to reduce power consumption and emissions. They will continue to make the operations of both Huawei and their supply chain greener and take steps to reduce carbon emissions.
  • Promoting renewable energy: they will continue investing more in renewable energy and providing green power for the intelligent world. They will also drive the transition to renewable energy and make the most of it.
  • Contributing to a circular economy: they will improve well-being by using less resources.


  • In 2019, Huawei’s carbon emissions per million RMB of sales revenue was 2.58 tons. This represented a 32.7% decrease compared to the base year (2012).
  • In 2019, Huawei completed multiple energy conservation projects, including upgrading free cooling and refrigeration, lighting, and the frequency converters used in condenser water pumps. These projects helped them save an additional 17.97 million kWh of electricity, equivalent to reducing CO2 emissions by 17,000 tons.
  • In 2019, 1.257 billion kWh of the electricity they used came from clean energy sources (natural gas), which was more than 2018 (1.195 billion kWh).


  • Huawei’s environmental protection targets for 2025: reduce carbon emissions (Scope 1 and Scope 2) per million RMB of revenue by 16% compared with 2019
  • Increase the energy efficiency of their main products by 2.7 times compared with 2019


Protecting The Environment

  • More Huawei products use greener packaging designs, saving a considerable amount of packaging materials. In 2019, Huawei shipped more than 400,000 pieces of green packaging, saving more than 90,000 m3 of wood.
  • By the end of 2019, Huawei was running nearly 1,300 recycling stations in 48 countries and regions around the world. Through a paid recycling program, Huawei’s service centers took back more than 300,000 used spare parts (totaling 60 tons)every month in 2019.
  • Huawei’s products’ power consumption per bit is 26–50% less than similar products in the industry. Each NetEngine 8000 X8 router, for example, can save about 90,000 kWh of electricity every year.
  • Launched in 2019, Huawei’s Mate 30 smartphone is powered by their latest chip, which is 20% more energy efficient than its predecessor. 
  • Since 2019, Huawei and Rainforest Connection (RFCx) have been working together to develop a platform that includes data collection devices, storage services, and intelligent analytics. These “Guardians” monitor and prevent illegal logging, in turn protecting endangered animals.
    • In partnership with Huawei, RFCx has deployed its rainforest solutions in 10 countries and expects to conserve about 6,000 square kilometers of protected areas by the end of 2020.

Social Impact

  • To help Kenyans in remote rural areas improve their digital awareness and digital skills, Huawei set up the DigiTruck mobile digital classroom in partnership with the Belgian nonprofit organization Close the Gap, the UNESCO Regional Office for Eastern Africa, GSMA, Computers For Schools Kenya (CFSK), and the Kenyan telecom carrier Safaricom.
  • In 2013, Huawei launched their ICT Academy that provides training on ICT technologies to university students worldwide and encourages them to participate in our certification programs. The academy aims to develop local ICT talent to meet future demand and build a sustainable talent ecosystem. In 2019 alone, Huawei trained over 45,000 students
  • In 2019, Huawei created a large number of jobs in local communities and more than 4,000 of their new hires were made locally, contributing to local economic development.



United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

United Nations SDGs Compliance

The following section aligns current company-wide sustainability initiatives with the UN Sustainable Development Goals. 


  • Digital Inclusion: Leaving no one behind in the digital world. Technology should not be for the few, but for the many
  • Continued to invest in technology, applications, and skills to promote digital inclusion for all. Their goal is to bring digital technology to every person, home, and organization


  • To reduce water usage, Huawei have rolled out clean production technologies and adopted a variety of measures such as collecting rainwater, recycling cooling water, recycling condensate, and buying reclaimed water for cleaning and landscaping on campuses

SDG 13

  • Environmental Protection: Contributing to a clean, efficient, low-carbon,and circular economy. Huawei is committed to minimize their environmental impact during production and operations and throughout their product and service life cycles
  • Using innovative products and solutions to help industries reduce energy use and emissions, and contribute to building a circular economy
  • Actively work with all their industry partners to build a low-carbon society. They are removing technical barriers in power supply for base stations, and continuously improving their site energy solutions to minimize site emissions
  • AI-enabled 5G Power site energy solution enables them to make the most of solar energy and other clean sources to power base stations and ultimately drop carbon emissions to zero

SDG 16

  • Security and Trustworthiness: Taking responsibility to build trust. Cyber security and privacy protection is their top priority. Huawei has continued to invest and remain transparent in both areas
  • Continually improved their software engineering capabilities and practices, built resilient networks, developed trustworthy and high-quality products, and supported stable network operations and business continuity

SDG 17

  • Collaborating for the common good. Huawei operates with integrity and in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations.
  • Working to ensure employee growth and maximize value. They actively contribute to the communities in which they operate.
  • Working with all industry partners to build a healthy and harmonious industry ecosystem

Huawei has integrated sustainability initiatives, however, the initiatives are mediocre. The company disclosed two targets and has made limited progress. Huawei has some certificates and has received some listings and awards.

Overall, the company lacks transparency and major information such as KPIs. In addition, Huawei does not specifically align their initiatives with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

There seems to be internal issues regarding ethics and standards with Huawei which does bring their sustainability rating lower than what it otherwise would be. Huawei has been given a “C” rating. 

Analyst Outlook: Negative

Huawei lacks transparency in their sustainability progress. They are working towards a more sustainable business plan, but they need to have more clear goals and explanations.

In addition, there are some allegations between the US government and the company regarding Iran sanction. The US does not buy Huawei products which is an area of concern. The company also has never directly stated who owns the company, as found in the New York Times article.

Key Points

  • Not transparent about company operations (link to NYT article) such as its employee owned operation
  • The company and chief financial officer are facing criminal charges in the US from “theft of trade secrets and violations of sanctions on Iran”  
  • The US is not allowed to buy their products because of cyber security issues largely in part because of a trade war
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