Telenor bars ZTE from tenders for ethics breach

14 Oct 2008

Norwegian telecoms group Telenor has announced that it has suspended hardware vendor ZTE from tenders for new business for a six month period, claiming the Chinese company had breached its code of conduct, Reuters is reporting. ‘We have suspended ZTE from participating in tenders and new business opportunities for a period of six months ending 3 March next year,’ said Telenor spokesman Dag Melgaard, who also confirmed that the suspension covered all of Telenor’s global operations. The decision comes as Telenor continues to act strongly on issues where ethics are concerned, with pressure on the group still present after reports of poor working conditions and child labour practices at its subcontractors in Bangladesh earlier this year.

In response to the announcement ZTE confirmed that it had identified an employee that breached ethics in dealing with the Norwegian telecoms group; ‘This situation between Telenor and ZTE has arisen because of the actions of a single employee in a ZTE subsidiary, acting on his own behalf. The individual concerned has been disciplined and we are reviewing possible legal action. We expect to continue the strong and positive relationship between our two companies in the very near future.’ ZTE noted in a written statement.

Norway, Telenor Group, ZTE