It is official, the United Kingdom says no to Huawei, a decision that was preceded by a certain controversy by the campaign of harassment and demolition that the United States has been launching against it, a country that, as many of our readers will know, has come to regard it as a danger for national security.
The decision of the British executive was sung. We knew that Huawei was going to be left out of 5G in that country, but we still did not have a definitive decision and deadline. Today we already know everything that will happen, as of December 31 of this same year It will be prohibited to buy 5G equipment from the Chinese giant, and in 2027 all Huawei equipment dedicated to 5G networks it must have been removed from the United Kingdom.
These measures maintain the line that we had previously seen when talking about a possible accelerated abandonment with a deadline of 2025. Telemarketers warned that such a rapid abandonment could end up being counterproductive, since it would force them to make cuts in the service, and that to avoid them it would be necessary to extend the term to a minimum of seven years, that is, to 2027, the date that the British government has finally agreed.
Huawei out of 5G in the UK, but why?
The decision has been made by the National Security Council (NSC) at a meeting chaired by Boris Johnson, the British Prime Minister, and has been direct consequence of the latest sanctions imposed on the United States to Huawei.
It is clear that pressure from the United States has also played a fundamental role. The Trump Administration was very clear when it came to talking about the possible consequences they would have to face those allies who decided to keep Huawei in their 5G networks, and there is no doubt that their “recommendations” have penetrated deep into our neighbor to the north.
At first the United Kingdom considered the possibility of leaving Huawei a small participation in its jump to 5G, but in the end they have chosen the resounding no. The transition to 5G will be carried out without equipment from the Chinese company, and the British government has already warned that they will make the necessary modifications at the legislative level so that this decision is only “a one-way route”, that is, so there is no going back.
We are clear about the measures that the United Kingdom will take, but how much will it cost to implement them? According to the source of the news, the accumulated cost of this, and of the previously announced restrictions against Huawei, will be about £ 2 billion, almost € 2.199 billion. Oliver Dowden, UK Digital Secretary, commented that it has been a difficult decision, but they believe it is the right thing for UK national security and for its economy, both in the short and long term.
The Huawei equipment used for 4G and earlier networks it will remain since, in theory, they do not represent a danger to national security. Curious, no doubt.
For its part, the Chinese giant has commented that it is bad news for anyone who lives in the United Kingdom and who has a mobile phone, and threatened to Bring the UK to the ‘slow digital line’, raise prices and widen the digital divide.
I know what you are thinking, and who will the UK turn to to get out of trouble? Well to NokiaIt will be the Finnish company that is responsible for providing most of the equipment that our northern neighbor will need to complete its transition to 5G. This will force you to face a higher cost, but will allow you to avoid rough edges with the world’s greatest power, the United States.
We update with Huawei’s official response:
Edward Brewster, spokesman for Huawei in the UK, commented:
“This disappointing decision is bad news for anyone in the UK who has a mobile phone. Poses threat to slow UK digital development, increase costs and deepen the digital divide. Instead of raising the level, the government is lowering it and we urge you to reconsider this decision. We remain confident that the new restrictions in the United States would not have affected the safety of the products we supply to the United Kingdom.
Unfortunately our future in the UK has been politicized as it is about a matter of trade policy United States and not security. For the past 20 years, Huawei has focused on building a better connected UK. As a responsible company, we will continue to support our clients as we always have.
We will conduct a detailed review of what today’s announcement means to our business and we will work with the british government to explain how we can continue to contribute to a better connected UK. “