Bloomberg reported Sunday that Prime Minister of UK Boris Johnson is planning to start removing Huawei 5G equipment from British 5G networks as soon as this year. The United Kingdom ‘s National Cybersecurity Center reported that US sanctions against China’s troubled mobile network provider would result in the company continuing to use unreliable technologies, contributing to security risks, a report said.
The Financial Times also reported that Prime Minister Boris Johnson was avoiding US pressure for months and now is planning to opt-out the use of Huawei 5G networks telecom equipment from the UK. In raising national security issues, the British Conservative Party has been calling on the company to withdraw Huawei 5G equipment from the rest of its telecommunications network in Britain by 2023.
In January Johnson, with some terms, authorised Huawei for 5G in the UK. The British limitations would prohibit Huawei from constructing critical sections of the 5G networks equipment in the United Kingdom, have a share of the market in 35% of Huawei by excluding Huawei from sensitive areas.
The administration of Trump has prohibited the government from using the Huawei 5G equipment. Last May the president signed an executive order banning American companies from purchasing telecommunications facilities which could pose domestic security risks. The order does not separate any one company from another, but it is seen to prohibit the operation in the USA of Chinese companies such as Huawei and ZTE. The ban was extended to May 2021 by Trump last week.
Huawei 5G equipment approval comes amid the US requesting that the UK ban the Chinese telecom company. The US has alleged that Huawei can develop backdoors into communications infrastructure, potentially to assist the Chinese government ‘s surveillance activities, while the Huawei has refuted this claim repeatedly.
Trump reportedly asked Johnson to discuss the situation during this year, and at least one congressperson stated that the US is rethinking its intelligence relationship with the UK.
Johnson also restricted the volume of Huawei products that could be included in UK 5G networks, prohibiting the usage of the company’s products in the network’s most vulnerable areas. He said there are not too many alternative options available for the UK’s 5G system in January and Vodafone telecommunications said banning Huawei 5G equipment from its networks would be incredibly expensive.
In May 2019, Huawei was banned by the US when it was added to the “entity list” (PDF) for the US. At around the same time, US President Trump issued an executive order to ban the company ostensibly in view of security concerns that Huawei had strong relations with the Chinese government.
Neither Johnson’s office nor Huawei immediately reacted to comment for this story.