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U.S.-China trade war puts chill on CES tech show

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on January 10, 2019 - Duration: 01:56s

U.S.-China trade war puts chill on CES tech show

U.S.-China tensions put a chill on world's biggest tech show CES in Las Vegas as some Chinese exhibitors stay home.

Jane Lee reports.

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U.S.-China trade war puts chill on CES tech show

What do you do if your neighbor doesn't show up at CES - the biggest tech show in the world?

Dance with your robot of course.

This space was earmarked for Beijing based Bubble Lab on the floor plan but the company doesn't appear to have come.

It's not clear why.

A Chinese newspaper reported that the number of Chinese companies attending had dropped about 20 percent from last year's record high.

CES organizers say Chinese exhibit space represents about 14 percent of total show floor space this year - roughly the same as last, and point to the growth of larger Chinese companies.

Like Meituan - a hugely popular food delivery app - coming to CES for the first time.

SOUNDBITE: WANG PUZHONG, SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT OF MEITUAN, saying: "I think the dispute and controversy is only temporary.

I believe that the two big countries will have more economic cooperation and innovate together." But major smartphone maker Xiaomi skipped the show altogether, and ZTE didn't get a booth.

ZTE and Huawei, two of China's biggest telecom equipment makers have been accused by the U.S. government of selling equipment capable of spying on Americans -- charges both companies deny.

And Huawei's CFO was arrested late last year in Canada, which some say made other executives jittery.

Huang Yifeng, whose company Proexpo PR organizes an event to promote Chinese startups, says all his clients have come to Vegas, but says companies hurt by U.S. tariffs were skipping the show.

SOUNDBITE: HUANG YIFENG, FOUNDER PROEXPO PR, Saying: "The tariffs have a big impact on them, so it's no use to come and get more sales orders." And one Chinese drone maker - Attop - left an empty booth with this man to handout brochures.

Attop says it decided to go to a Hong Kong toy and game expo overlapping with CES instead where it would meet its European clients.

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