2020 has given Huawei yet another bad news
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has finally given into Conservative backbench pressure and now plans to reduce the use of Huawei‘s equipment from Britain‘s 5G network to zero by 2023.
House of Commons’ rebelling against Johnson’s proposal
Johnson had been resisting this pressure from the US for months, but when his existing proposal to reduce the company to a 35% market share looked like it would suffer a humiliating defeat when voted in the House of Commons, he had to cave in.
His reason for resistance? Johnson argued that there weren’t a lot of options for the UK’s infrastructure. Even telecom giant Vodafone wasn’t in favor of the ban as removing Huawei from its networks could be too expensive for them.
Interestingly, Johnson has an 80 majority, but it’s being estimated that the number of Conservative MPs against the involvement of Huawei is now 50, which is enough to fail the prime minister‘s proposal.
It seems like the anti-Chinese sentiment has hardened in the country after the ongoing Coronavirus crisis mainly because of the accusation against China of not being transparent about the early stages of the virus.
Good news for the Trump administration
US President Donald Trump will certainly be delighted with Johnson‘s move as he had already been campaigning against Huawei.
The White House has banned government officials from using the flagship‘s technology, with Trump signing an executive order last May blocking US companies from purchasing foreign-made telecommunications equipment citing it as a threat to national security. Just last week, this ban was extended for another year.
Trump had reportedly called Johnson at the beginning of 2020 to discuss Huawei. The latter was also warned by Top House Republican defense hawks that not phasing out the Chinese telecommunications giant could risk the safety of the UK’s intelligence partnership with the US.
The reason why Trump is lobbying against Huawei
The White House thinks that Huawei helps the Chinese government to spy on countries by building backdoors into telecom networks. Although the company has repeatedly denied this charge, nobody seems to believe them. It should also be noted that there is no solid evidence to prove this charge.
Huawei security chief, Andy Prudy told The Verge, “We vigorously deny the allegation that we retain any such capability. We also deny that we have ever improperly accessed customer information or customer data.”