Home Government Tech Policy US lobbying allies to stop using Huawei equipment
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The American Government has ramped up its campaign against Chinese telecommunications equipment maker Huawei Technologies, briefing officials in so-called "friendly countries" to try and get them to stop using equipment from the Chinese vendor.

Washington may also consider providing aid to countries that give up the use of Chinese equipment, so that they can develop their telco infrastructure, The Wall Street Journal claims.

The countries which the US has approached include Germany, Italy and Japan.

But one big Italian telco was said to have refused to stop using Huawei equipment, with a board member of the unnamed telco telling the newspaper that while he was aware of the claimed risks, the company planned to continue using equipment from Huawei.

The US has since 2012 been claiming that Huawei equipment can be used to spy if the Chinese Government asks the company to do so. Huawei has denied ever being involved in such activity.

With the impending arrival of 5G, the US calls for a Huawei boycott have become that much more strident. Australia has responded and banned Huawei, and its Chinese counterpart ZTE Corporation, from any role in 5G networks.

The WSJ report claimed that 5G radio access networks could be used to attack the core of the network, a claim that has been shown to be false by Huawei itself which demonstrated the separation of the two components in Auckland on Wednesday, in a trial carried out with NZ telco Spark.

The trial used a Huawei 5G NR (New Radio on both the C-band and mmWave) and a 4G Radio Access Network, both of which were deployed by using dedicated hardware connected to the Cisco Evolved Packet Core, with each component isolated.

The WSJ report was published a day after British Telecom's chief architect Neil McRae was quoted as saying that "there is only one true 5G supplier right now and that is Huawei – the others need to catch up".

McRae made the statement at Huawei's Global Mobile Broadband Forum event in London on Wednesday, adding, "The other suppliers need to learn from Huawei – the others are held back by old telco issues."

Contacted for comment, a Huawei spokesperson said: "Huawei's products and solutions are widely used in more than 170 countries worldwide, serving 46 of the world's top 50 operators, Fortune 500 companies and hundreds of millions of consumers. So many companies and consumers choose Huawei because they trust fully and recognise the value Huawei delivers.

"Huawei is shocked by the behaviour of the US Government detailed in the article. If a government's behaviour extends beyond its jurisdiction, such activity should not be encouraged.

"Huawei firmly believes that our partners and customers will make the right choice based on their own judgment and experience of working with Huawei. We will continue to serve our global customers with our innovative solutions."

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the sitecame into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

 

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