Huawei has been banned from taking part in Britain’s 5G network. In an order issued yesterday after a meeting by UK ’s National Security Council, Huawei equipment will be removed entirely from Britain’s 5G network by the end of 2027.
The U.K. had previously offered Huawei a limited role in its 5G network in January. But pressure from the U.S., recent sanctions procurement of chips, and the Hong Kong issue forced the country to go back to the drawing board.
Britain’s National Cyber Security Centre warned ministers that the U.S. sanctions on procurement of chips meant Huawei was not a trustworthy supplier, according to Reuters.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson ordered telecommunications companies to stop buying equipment from Huawei by year-end and to purge the equipment from their network in the next seven years. Huawei was to supply the U.K. with up to 35% of non-core 5G equipment.
“This has not been an easy decision, but it is the right one for the U.K. telecoms networks, for our national security and our economy, both now and indeed in the long run,” said Oliver Dowden, a digital minister.
The decision could lead to a delay in 5G rollout, and it will also cost the U.K. more, as a result.
The overturn ends Britain’s two-decade-long partnership with Huawei.
Huawei’s 5G participation has already been banned in the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, Japan, and Taiwan.
Locally, Safaricom announced earlier this year that they would be using Huawei to build their 5G network.
“We will use Huawei in 5G … What will we do in terms of the American statements about not using Huawei? We don’t have that situation in Africa,” said then Acting CEO Michael Joseph, in February. Could this have an impact on Safaricom’s choice of 5g partners? Probably no.
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