Bowing down to their U.S Counterparts, Prime Minister Boris Johnson is apparently preparing to completely phase out the use of Huawei equipment from U.K’s 5G networks according to a report from the Financial Times. Citing national security concerns, members of the U.K’s Conservative party have pushed for removing Huawei’s hardware and software related upgrades completely from their 5G telecom structures by 2023.
The Trump administration banned government use of Huawei’s technology as the president signed an executive order last May that blocked U.S companies from buying and installing foreign-made telecommunication equipments under the pretext of certain equipment posing security risks. While the order does not single out Huawei, it is often viewed as a branched out attempt to exclude Chinese firms like ZTE and Huawei from doing business in the U.S. Last week, Trump even extended the ban till May 2021.
Trump, if reports are to be believed, called Prime Minister Boris Johnson and at least one member of the Congress were believed to be siding with the U.S in accordance of protecting their strategic partnership with the U.S. Johnson has limited how Huawei equipment could be used for 5G networks in the U.K, even banning the company’s use of technology in the most sensitive part of the country’s networks.
He was caught quoting in January that there were not a lot of options for the U.K’s 5G infrastructure and telecom giant Vodafone even said that removing Huawei from the network structures would be extremely cost
Huawei’s Victor Zhang told the FT that the reports “simply don’t make sense” and argued that the UK chose to allow Huawei because it needed the “best possible technologies, more choice, innovation and more suppliers.”