After rolling back a decision to allow Huawei-made components to be used in non-critical parts of the UK’s 5G infrastrucutre, the UK government has just announced a landmark decision to block Huawei parts from being used throughout its 5G infrastructure in a major win for the Trump Administration as it bids to exclude Huawei from lucrative western markets, due to national security concerns.
Starting Dec. 31, Huawei will be barred from providing new equipment to British networks. Additionally, Johnson’s National Security Council agreed Tuesday that all existing Huawei equipment must also be stripped from 5G networks by 2027. That’s a slower timeline than some national security-conscious Tories had demanded. The NSC reportedly concluded, according to the FT, that the latest round of sanctions out of Washington demonstrated that Huawei’s products truly cannot be trusted to be used in the UK’s telecoms infrastructure due to the extreme risk they will be compromised by Beijing. Since the US rules will stop Huawei from using US-made chips, the UK concluded that this would heighten the risk of spying as Huawei will now need to use more chips made in China.
Additionally, the UK’s full-fiber broadband operators will be given two years to “transition” away from the purchase of Huawei equipment, while BoJo urges them not to purchase any new Huawei kit.
Oliver Dowden, the UK’s secretary of state for media, digital cultural, media and sport, said the decision is intended to build a more “mature” economic relationship with China.