Sir Michael Rake, former President of the Confederation of British Industry and former Chairman of BT group, has joined the board of Huawei Technologies UK.

The appointment of Sir Rake, an adviser to the company since the beginning of 2019, is hoped to help the tech giant tackle industry challenges.

The appointment comes amid the publication of an open letter by Huawei VP Victor Zhang, which asks the UK not remove Huawei from the nation’s telecommunications infrastructure after “groundless criticism” of its involvement in the 5G rollout.

“We have built trust in our UK business over 20 years by helping our customers – the mobile network operators – provide consumers with affordable, reliable calls and data,” wrote Zhang.

“And there are those who choose to continue to attack us without presenting any evidence. Disrupting our involvement in the 5G rollout would do Britain a disservice.”

Sir Rake will serve alongside fellow non-executive directors on the Huawei UK board, Lord Browne of Madingley, Sir Kenneth Olisa and Sir Andrew Cahn.

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UK TECH APPOINTMENTS IN 2020

The independent non-executive directors are responsible for reviewing the performance of Huawei in the UK, providing counsel to the Huawei Management Team regarding the company’s operations in the UK, and carrying out the statutory obligations of directors of a UK limited liability company.

Sir Michael Rake said of his appointment: “At BT, I saw first-hand how Huawei worked with Britain’s leading operators to roll out broadband, 3G and 4G. I look forward to working with them again on the next generation of technology as the company extends its 20 year track record in the UK.”

Zhang added: “I am delighted Sir Michael has agreed to join the board and help us continue this important journey.”