The United Kingdom has today banned mobile providers from purchasing new Huawei 5G equipment.
The UK’s Digital Secretary, Oliver Dowden told the House of Commons that mobile providers are being banned from buying new Huawei 5G equipment after 31 December. They are also required to remove all the Chinese firm’s 5G kit from their networks by 2027. This drastic moves means that the country will delay its 5G rollout by a year.
“This has not been an easy decision, but it is the right one for the UK telecoms networks, for our national security and our economy, both now and indeed in the long run,” he said.
Mr. Dowden expects that this transitioning away from Huawei equipment will happen within two years. He explained that the additional time was being provided for broadband to avoid the country being dependent on Nokia as the single supplier of some equipment.
This is a major U-turn move by the UK government regarding Huawei. Back in January, they decided to let Huawei remain to be a supplier but introduced a cap on its market share. Huawei had new problems with the United States where they introduced sanctions that disrupted their ability to gets its own chips manufacturers.
Now the minister cited a review carried a review done by the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) National Cyber Security Center as being a motivation for the changes. Security officials concluded they could no longer assure the security of its products if the company had to start sourcing chips from third parties for use in its equipment.