Huawei Is China’s Top Importer of … Beef?

A recent report suggests that Huawei, the heavily sanctioned Chinese electronics manufacturer, has become China’s largest beef importer. The rumors stem from the company’s alleged acceptance of beef as payment from Argentinian clients, in lieu of traditional currency. 

The speculation gained traction when media conglomerate Phoenix TV released a video reporting on Huawei’s alleged new status as China’s top beef importer. 

Further investigation reveals that Huawei’s subsidiary, Shanghai Mossel Trade Co., which sells imported foods and its own brand of wine, has ties to the company’s founder, Ren Zhengfei, and his family. 

Mossel was reportedly launched after Huawei accepted beef and wine from an Argentinian client as payment for cellular parts and equipment, as the client struggled to acquire the necessary funds in US dollars or Chinese yuan.

The payment method has become more common since the US hiked interest rates in 2022, making it difficult for companies in smaller countries to obtain the required currency to purchase electronic equipment. With China’s suspension of its currency swap agreement with Argentina in December 2023, Argentinian telecom companies have been left with only pesos, a currency prone to rapid inflation.

In response to these challenges, Huawei reportedly opened a “Food Zone” where customers can purchase Argentinian wine and beef, Chilean salmon, and other products. By selling these goods wholesale and retail, Huawei can convert the only form of currency available from these countries into yuan.

Huawei has firmly denied the rumors, at least according to the site Huawei Central

“​​​Mosel is a quality life platform under Huawei, mainly serving employees and their families. The statement that ‘Huawei is the largest beef importer in China’ is pure rumor. It is also nonsense to associate it with meat price fluctuations and the international situation. Please do not spread it or believe it. We hereby clarify.​​”


Information for this story was found via the sources and companies mentioned. The author has no securities or affiliations related to the organizations discussed. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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