In another major blow to the Chinese player, the UK has decided to ban Huawei from its 5G networks. The UK government on Tuesday took this step to remove all Huawei kit from the UK networks.
The decision was made after a review by the country’s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) on the impact of US sanctions against Huawei. The UK government has decided that it will impose a total ban on the purchase of any new 5G kit from Huawei after December 31, 2020. The government has also decided to remove all the Chinese equipment on 5G networks across the UK by the end of 2027.
“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,” said Oliver Dowden, UK Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). “Following US sanctions against Huawei and updated technical advice from our cyber experts, the government has decided it 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,” he said.
Huawei termed this decision as disappointing and 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,” said, Edward Brewster, spokesperson of Huawei 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,” he said.