Chinese tech giant Huawei, which is the biggest supplier of telecom equipment in the world, has been in immense trouble over the past few months after the United States authorities accused it of spying on behalf of Beijing and then banned it from the country. However, that was not all that the US did. It also reached out to some of its key allies and asked them not to allow Huawei to build their networks. One of those key allies is the United Kingdom, and for long it was believed that the policymakers would not allow Huawei to be a part of the process of building the country’s 5G network. Considering the fact that the British intelligence agencies had asked Huawei for proof regarding the security of their equipment, it comes as a bit of a surprise that the company has been allowed to work on UK’s 5G network.
Although it is true that the British government has confirmed nothing as yet, several members of the British media have gone on record regarding the development. However, the Daily Telegraph has reported that the company might not be actually involved in core telecom equipment supply and will instead supply products like antennas. Some of the key allies that the US has warned include Australia, New Zealand and Canada, in addition to the United Kingdom. Considering the fact that Australia has already stated that it is not going to allow Huawei to supply equipment to its networks, UK’s move must come as a big surprise in certain quarters in the US establishment.
Despite the major buzz, the ministry concerned with the whole process has stated that the review process is still ongoing and an announcement will be made when it is done. Margot James, who is the Digital Minister of the UK stated in a tweet that a ‘final decision’ had not been reached yet. She tweeted, In spite of Cabinet leaks to the contrary, final decision yet to be made on managing threats to telecoms infrastructure.” Although no announcement has been made yet, Huawei has already jumped the gun and stated that the company is happy at the fact that the UK has taken an ‘evidence-based approach’ to the whole thing. If Huawei is eventually allowed to work on the UK’s 5G network, then it remains to be seen how the US reacts to the development.