Daily Management Review

India Leaves Out Chinese Firms Huawei And ZTE From 5G Trials


India Leaves Out Chinese Firms Huawei And ZTE From 5G Trials
India became the latest country to keep the Chinese telecom equipment making companies Huawei and ZTE from its 5G trials. This decision was taken by the telecom ministry of the country.
In an announcement for entry of telecom companies into the roll out of 5G networks in India, permission was granted to a dozen firms which included Ericsson, Nokia and Samsung's network unit. These companies can be engaged for a sixth-month trial of 5G technology in the country.
Even though Huawei and ZTE were not included in the list issued by the ministry, it also did not mention anything about the two Chinese telecom giants being barred from supplying of 5G equipment to telecom service providers.
India is the second largest market in the world in terms of the number of phone users.
The 5G trials will be carried out by the telecom service providers of India including Reliance Industries' Jio Infocomm, Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea along with state-run MTNL.
Each company "will have to conduct trials in rural and semi-urban settings also in addition to urban settings so that the benefit of 5G Technology proliferates across the country and is not confined only to urban areas", said a statement from the Indian government's Press Information Bureau.
Here has not yet been any ban imposed by the Indian government on the Chinese companies which currently are the suppliers of a significant amount of equipment to the mobile communication service providers of the country.
However analysts say that the Indian government has indicated taking up a much tighter and security-oriented approach about the telecom networks of the country which they expect will be a deterrent for the Chinese telecom equipment making companies.
The Indian government had said in December last year that it would identify "trusted" sources of telecom equipment suppliers for the telecom carriers of the country and its carriers would be advised to use telecom equipment form such secured sources as the country prepares a new security directive for the telecom sector.
It is expected that the new regulations on procurement will be implemented from June this year and is expected to impose restrictions on Indian network providers over their purchasing of certain types of telecom equipment only from the identified "trusted sources". The new directive could also mention a list of banned suppliers.
A number of countries of the world including the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand have already imposed a ban on Huawei from participation in the roll out of 5G networks of the countries over national security concerns. Huawei has also been placed in the so called Entity List of the US Department of Commerce which essentially bars it from accessing items produced made with the help of US technology and software.
The US has alleged that Chinese agencies could use Huawei’s 5G equipment for spying. The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has even ordered a number of telecommunications companies of the country to remove the existing equipment in their networks from Huawei.