The UK has been one of the few countries to date that has allowed Huawei to participate in the construction of the future 5G network. The participation will probably not last long; the equipment should be out of the network by 2023.
Boris Johnson is said to have drawn up a plan to curtail Huawei’s participation in the UK 5G network; thus, after 2023, Huawei would have no active network equipment in these 5G networks. Johnson drafted the plan after it received pressure from Conservative members of the government in the UK. The British Prime Minister’s plan goes against previous plans to limit the use of Huawei equipment in telecommunications networks to 35 percent. Australia was one of the first American allies to make a decision to completely ban Huawei equipment from its network.
More and more providers are testing 5G equipment and setting up full 5G networks
What is striking is that British intelligence services had previously indicated that Huawei could be trusted. After an investigation by an independent party, ” no serious problems ” were found. From the United States, Huawei is repeatedly accused of integrating so-called backdoors into its software, which – if requested by the Chinese government – can spy in the countries where the Huawei equipment is active. Huawei refutes the claims of the United States by stating “that it has no access to the personal data of the network users”.
Huawei has long been seen as a potential threat by the US government. Trump made the decision to bar the use of Huawei equipment in U.S. networks unless this network infrastructure operated in “ sparsely populated areas of the U.S., ” where small providers typically operate. The decision also posed a threat to allies of the United States: there may be a reconsideration of “how the US intelligence department would work with the ally” if Huawei equipment were deployed in 5G networks; the threat would also be directed towards the UK.
Since the placement on the Entity List, Huawei is not allowed to trade with American parties
Banning Huawei from the UK’s telecom networks will probably be expensive for the providers. British BT previously announced that the 35 percent limit would cost some £ 500 million – with full elimination, the costs are of course much higher. Victor Zhang, Vice President of Huawei, told the Financial Times that “this move does not make sense.” For the time being, these are rumors and the government has not expressed its opinion about the plans to exclude Huawei from its telecom networks and how it will compensate the providers for this.
Huawei was placed on the US Entity List on May 16, 2019. Since then, the company is no longer allowed to trade with American parties, such as Google. The US government recently announced in a follow-up measure that ‘suppliers of Huawei who use American software for their production’ are not allowed to supply to Huawei. TSMC confirmed the trade blockade and will eventually shut down deliveries to Huawei. Huawei would already have talks with MediaTek to get chipsets for upcoming phones. The consequences of this blockade are still unknown.