FedEx refused to ship a Huawei smartphone to US amidst Huawei ban

The Huawei ban imposed by the US government has made many US companies afraid to make any kind of deal with the Chinese smartphone manufacturing company. In May 2019,  Huawei was barred by the U.S. government from conducting any kind of business dealings with technology companies in the United States because of what the U.S. called “security concerns”.

The writers of PC magazine tried to ship a Huawei P30 smartphone from its office in the UK to their US office, and they were taken aback to see that the phone had been returned to the UK office after a few days.

Although the sender identified the smartphone down to IMEI number, and it was evident from day one that the parcel contained a Huawei phone, the parcel traveled all the way to Indianapolis from London i.e. from the UK Parcelforce’s office to its partner in the US, FedEx’s office, where a legal problem arose and the parcel was shipped back to London.

The package was returned with an attached notice which read “parcel returned by FedEx, due U.S. Government issue with Huawei and China government. RTS”. It is understood that despite knowing details about the package, FedEx has adopted preemptive measures in order to not indulge in any legal issue amidst the Huawei ban.

The incident was shared by an irritated staff member of PC Magazine in his tweet. He posted the picture of the parcel with a notice attached to it and wrote that the phone was returned despite it not being a new one and was already in use by PC Magazine. Sascha Segan, the member of PC Magazine’s staff, also mentioned FedEx and Huawei in his tweet.

“This is totally ridiculous. Our UK writer tried to send us his @HuaweiMobile P30 unit so I could check something – not a new phone, our existing phone, already held by our company, just being sent between offices – and THIS happened @FedEx,” the tweet by Sascha read.

According to PC Magazine, they are trying to refresh their review of the Huawei flagship P30 Pro and they tried to ship the phone from the UK for the same purpose. The UK reporter Adam Smith who sent the parcel, wrote the model number and other details of the phone honestly while completing the form.

The reason for the parcel’s return was revealed to be the tussle between Huawei and the US causing US companies to refuse Huawei’s products.

“As advised on the information provided, due to the issues the USA government is having with Huawei they don’t accept any items with this brand,” Pam, a customer service representative for Parcelforce told Adam Smith over Twitter direct message.

This tweet was followed by a tweet from the account of FedEx, who apologized for the inconvenience faced by Adam. The tweet also mentioned that the reason for returning the phone was Huawei’s inclusion in the entity list which bars US companies from dealing with the Chinese company. 

“Adam, on May 16, 2019, Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd. and 68 of its global affiliates were included on the ‘Entity List’ which sets out a list of certain entities that US companies are restricted from doing business with. My apologies for the inconvenience this has caused you,” FedEx tweeted.

However, the Twitter account for FedEx served up another confusing tweet which read, “Adam, it is my understanding that to ensure our compliance, at this time we are not accepting any shipments to any of the listed Huawei entities”.

This second tweet is noteworthy since neither FedEx nor Parcelforce were doing any sort of business deal with Huawei and nothing was being transferred to or from Huawei. Huawei’s spokeswoman replied on Twitter that FedEx has misinterpreted the executive order by the Trump government.

However, UPS does not have any such problem as a spokesperson for the company told PC Magazine, “There is not a general ban on shipping Huawei devices between the United Kingdom and the United States locations”. UPS will only deny shipping products to the “69 selected Huawei locations” which have been listed in the Federal Register since May 21.

UPS said in a tweet that their policies are different from that of FedEx and that the law doesn’t prevent the shipping of Huawei devices to the US from the UK.

“I did see the article about FedEx refusing these shipments but I reviewed our information and policies and this is not the case for us. There is nothing prohibiting shipping a Huawei phone from the U.K. to the U.S.,” UPS tweeted.