Prime Minister Boris Johnson has ordered Huawei equipment to be purged completely from Britain’s 5G network by 2027, risking the ire of China by signalling that the world’s biggest telecoms equipment maker is no longer welcome in the West.
Following is some early reaction:
Digital Secretary Oliver Dowden said:
“5G will be transformative for our country, but only if we have confidence in the security and resilience of the infrastructure it is built upon.”
“Following U.S. sanctions against Huawei and updated technical advice from our cyber experts, the government has decided it is necessary to ban Huawei from our 5G networks.”
“No new kit is to be added from January 2021, and UK 5G networks will be Huawei free by the end of 2027. This decisive move provides the industry with the clarity and certainty it needs to get on with delivering 5G across the UK.”
“This disappointing decision is bad news for anyone in the UK with a mobile phone. It threatens to move Britain into the digital slow lane, push up bills and deepen the digital divide. Instead of ‘levelling up’ the government is levelling down and we urge them to reconsider. We remain confident that the new US restrictions would not have affected the resilience or security of the products we supply to the UK.
“Regrettably our future in the UK has become politicized, this is about US trade policy and not security. Over the past 20 years, Huawei has focused on building a better connected UK. As a responsible business, we will continue to support our customers as we have always done.
“We will conduct a detailed review of what today’s announcement means for our business here and will work with the UK government to explain how we can continue to contribute to a better connected Britain.”
Finnish telecom gear maker Nokia NOKIA.HE is ready to replace Huawei HWT.UL equipment in Britain, the head of Nokia Britain said on Tuesday following the UK’s decision to stop using the Chinese manufacturer.
“We have the capacity and expertise to replace all of the Huawei equipment in the UK’s networks at scale and speed, and are ready to step up to support the implementation of the UK government decision with minimal impact on the people using our customers’ networks,” Cormac Whelan said.
“We note the government’s announcement today relating to the use of Huawei equipment in the UK. The security and resilience of our networks is an absolute priority for BT.
“While we have prepared for a range of scenarios, we need to further analyse the details and implications of this decision before taking a view of potential costs and impacts.”