Britain decision on Huawei 5G likely next week

Epoch Times

Epoch Times

Reuters has published claims from two sources that say the recommendation was made at a meeting of officials from senior government departments.

The report added that the UK's National Security Council will meet next week to decide if and how Huawei's technology is utilised.

The official said that the decision had not yet been taken, but that it would probably be next week.

A spokesperson for the British prime minister's office declined to comment on the debates over Huawei or what role the company could play the country's 5G network rollout. When a decision has been taken, it will be announced to Parliament. The company has repeatedly and vehemently denied allegations of spying.

On Tuesday, Robert Strayer, the US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Cyber and International Communications and Information Policy, discussed the threat allegedly posed by equipment from Huawei, the Chinese telecoms giant, being used in future 5G mobile networks, when he granted an interview to FRANCE 24.

The official said that Britain - unlike the United States - had been using Huawei technology in its systems for the past 15 years.

Huawei is the world's leading manufacturer of 5G devices. If the new rules are passed, USA semiconductor manufacturers will also take a massive hit.

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Johnson told BBC Breakfast last week that Britain deserved "access to the best possible technology".

Some rival telecom suppliers, however, told the Guardian that there can be no real distinction between core and non-core equipment because 5G generates greater speeds by having 5G networks' intelligence in base stations, rather than at the heart of the network.

While Huawei equipment is largely absent from major USA networks, United Kingdom operators including BT and Vodafone previously used the vendor's gear, and have pushed back against a total ban.

Reuters sources said the proposed solution was an effort to make a "calculated commitment".

United Kingdom intelligence officials have called out Huawei for failing to address security flaws in its equipment, but say they have found no evidence of state espionage and believe they are able to successfully manage any risks posed by the firm. They have also stated that they believe they can handle any risk.

The move comes after reports that two of the country's biggest telecoms groups - BT and Vodafone - were considering writing a letter to warn Johnson of how hard they would would find it to build out 5G infrastructure if a blanket ban were implemented.

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