Expert on UK Decision on Huawei: It's More Pressure to Take Side and Britain Really Needs to Resist

© REUTERS / ALY SONGA Huawei logo and a 5G sign are pictured at Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Shanghai, China June 28, 2019
A Huawei logo and a 5G sign are pictured at Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Shanghai, China June 28, 2019 - Sputnik International
A decision on whether Chinese firm Huawei should be excluded from the rollout of 5G mobile phone networks in the UK has been postponed. Culture secretary Jeremy Wright said the government is "not yet in a position" to decide what involvement Huawei should have in the 5G network. The Middle East Expert Tom Harper expressed his opinion on the story.

Sputnik: Can you tell me a bit more about this story?

Tom Harper: The UK is a participant in the theatre of wider competition for 5g and in many ways, this is related to the leak to the telegraph that William some provided. It claimed that the company would be allowed to build part of the UK's a non-critical 5g infrastructure. These comments are really a consequence of this of the events earlier this year.

Sputnik: If they refuse the company entry to the UK infrastructure what effect would this have on the UK?

Tom Harper: On one hand for regarding 5g the most immediate consequences, which was set the development of 5g in this country back by at least a year and it would be quite costly - it cost about 7 million pounds estimated. Huawei has also been identified as the world leader in 5g technology which makes this a particularly notable opportunity. In the case of Huawei part of the wider test is what the UK will have to undergo if Brexit doesn't go ahead. One hand Britain will be under a lot of pressure from the US which has been quite the case of constant calls into banning Huawei, but equally, Britain will be under pressure from China and China has often been identified as one of the alternative markets for British firms to do business with if in the event of Brexit. So if Huawei is banned it is likely to heart Britain’s business with the Chinese. It's more pressure to take a side and I think this is a pressure that Britain really needs to resist.

Sputnik: If they allow the company entry to the UK, what effect will this have on relations between nations such as the US and Canada?

Tom Harper: What we should really mentioned here is that all of those countries mentioned are part of the Five Eyes intelligence network, so if Britain does go ahead with Huawei that will put those ties under strain and also seeing a little bit outside the case of Huawei, with the case of Iran, where the US wants to put more pressure whereas Britain wants to have less pressure with Iran. So I think this will contribute to even more strain with the security and the intelligence relationship between Britain and these countries.

The views expressed in this article are those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

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