The U.K. government has cleared Chinese company Huawei to participate in parts of the country’s 5G rollouts, The Daily Telegraph reported.
Huawei will be kept away from sensitive core elements of the 5G infrastructure, according to the report.
The decision to allow Huawei to participate in 5G rollouts was backed by Prime Minister Theresa May, following a meeting with officials on the country’s National Security Council.
The U.K. government has been facing growing pressure from the Trump administration in recent months to ban Huawei from supplying equipment for 5G networks due to security concerns.
“Huawei welcomes reports that the U.K. government is moving towards allowing Huawei to help build the U.K.’s 5G network. This green light means that U.K. businesses and consumers will have access to the fastest and most reliable networks thanks to Huawei’s cutting edge technology,” Huawei said in a statement.
“While we await a formal government announcement, we are pleased that the U.K. is continuing to take an evidence-based approach to its work and we will continue work cooperatively with the government, and the industry,” the Chinese vendor added.
In February, the U.K. National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) reportedly concluded that the country has the tools to mitigate the potential risk from using Huawei equipment in 5G networks.
Robert Hannigan, former head of GCHQ, the U.K. signals intelligence agency, recently wrote in the Financial Times that NCSC had “never found evidence of malicious Chinese state cyber activity through Huawei” and that any “assertions that any Chinese technology in any part of a 5G network represents an unacceptable risk are nonsense.”
The conclusions by U.K. intelligence seem not to be shared by Australia and New Zealand — also members of the “Five Eyes” intelligence-sharing group of countries — which last year banned or blocked telecoms providers from using Huawei equipment in 5G networks.
Meanwhile, Huawei’s support of 5G networks around the world continues to ramp up. Huawei has already secured 40 contracts to build and operate 5G networks, the company’s rotating CEO Ken Hu said.
The announcement was made at a keynote speech at the vendor’s 2019 Global Analyst Summit at its headquarter in Shenzhen in southern China.
Huawei has signed 23 contracts in Europe, six in Asia-Pacific (APAC), 10 in the Middle East and one in Africa. The Chinese vendor also confirmed it has already shipped over 70,000 5G base stations and expects to have shipped 100,000 by May.
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