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US President Donald Trump is likely to issue an executive order later this week banning the use of telecommunications equipment from Chinese companies in American wireless networks.

A report in Politico cited unnamed sources as saying the aim was to issue the order before the Mobile World Congress which is scheduled to be held in Barcelona from 25 to 28 February.

The order would mean a ban on the use of equipment from Huawei Technologies and ZTE Corporation, the two biggest Chinese manufacturers of telecommunications equipment.

A ban on the use of Huawei and ZTE equipment in government networks is already in force in the US.

The move comes after the US has launched a propaganda blitz against Huawei, claiming the company could conduct espionage on behalf of China.

Huawei has steadfastly denied the allegations and challenged anyone to show proof of security vulnerabilities in its telecommunications equipment.

But the report said there was no decision yet on how 5G networks would be built in the US without equipment from Huawei.

One industry source said the message going out to countries in Europe — where US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has been campaigning to try and get countries not to use Huawei gear — was to go slow.

At the moment, however, no plan had been drawn to manage without equipment from Huawei, with the main push coming from smaller rural ISPs who had benefitted from the use of equipment from the Chinese vendor due to the prices and good service.

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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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