Update, June 22, 2019 (3:10 pm ET): FedEx provided PC Mag with the following statement. According to the company, the shipment was returned by mistake.
The package in question was mistakenly returned to the shipper, and we apologize for this operational error. As a global company that moves 15 million shipments each day, we are committed to compliance with all rules and regulations and minimizing impact to our customers as we adjust our operations to comply with a dynamic US regulatory environment.
Original post, June 21, 2019 (1:40 pm ET): Today, via PC Mag, we learned that FedEx refused to deliver a Huawei P30 smartphone headed to the United States from the United Kingdom. Rather than deliver the package, FedEx returned it to the sender with a message:
“Parcel returned by FedEx, due U.S. government issue with Huawei and China government”
According to PC Mag, the P30 smartphone shipment occurred because one writer needed it for a test. He requested the phone from a U.K.-based co-worker, who shipped it out using FedEx. On the customs sheet, the sender identified the package contents by listing the manufacturer and the model number.
In other words, this wasn’t a commercial sale of a Huawei smartphone — this was one employee shipping company-owned product to another employee.
We are not international lawyers here at Android Authority, but we assume this is a case of FedEx being overly cautious. The Huawei ban prohibits U.S.-based companies from doing business with Huawei which definitively wasn’t the case here.
It’s possible FedEx is just trying to err on the side of caution, but this seems a bit extreme.
Towards the end of May, we heard the news that FedEx and Huawei were going to dissolve their partnership together, with at least two packages destined for China getting diverted. However, this PC Mag event is the first we’ve heard of FedEx refusing to ship something Huawei-related to the U.S.
The best advice we can give for now is if you’re going to ship a Huawei phone anywhere, avoid using FedEx as the carrier.