Perhaps fearing a backlash from Chinese corporates that could seriously undermine its prospects in one of the world’s largest growth markets, FedEx apologized to Huawei on Wednesday after the global logistics company ‘accidentally’ diverted two packages sent from Japan that had been addressed to Huawei in China, RT reports.
The packages, which purportedly contained mundane – yet ‘urgent’ – legal documents, were inexplicably rerouted to FedEx’s US headquarters in Memphis. Two more packages sent from Vietnam were nearly re-routed as well.
These parcel “hijackings” made little sense, but given the delicate state of relations between Washington and China – and Washington and Huawei in particular – the incidents aroused the anger of Huawei, even as FedEx insisted that the packages were re-routed by ‘mistake,’ and insisted that there was no “external pressure” to divert the packages. Still, Huawei spokesman Joe Kelly said FedEx’s ‘mistaken’ diverting of the packages had “undermined their confidence” in the American shipping company.
“We will now have to review our logistics and document delivery support requirements as a direct result of these incidents,” Kelly continued.
Huawei said it only learned that the packages had been re-routed after checking its FedEx tracking records. The two packages that had been re-routed to Memphis were in the process of being returned to sender. Beijing’s “cartoon” mouthpiece and Trump Twitter foil Hu Xijin expressed suspicions about the US’s intentions.
FedEx has mistakenly diverted Huawei packages to the US. Is this shockingly bad service or is it doing dirty work for the US govt? How will US media react if the incident happened between a US high-tech company&a Chinese package delivery company? The US should take introspection.
— Hu Xijin 胡锡进 (@HuXijin_GT) May 28, 2019
Since the incident, Huawei has only received one of the nearly diverted packages from Vietnam, though tracking records indicate the second is on its way, the company said.
But is FedEx is being truthful about the incident being a simple ‘mistake’ and not an intentional diversion? The circumstances, given Huawei’s recent addition to the Commerce Department’s “Entities List,” certainly create grounds for suspicion.