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S. Korean Mobile Carriers Distressed over Huawei’s 5G Equipment
Huawei Shunned by Growing Number of Countries
S. Korean Mobile Carriers Distressed over Huawei’s 5G Equipment
  • By Kim Eun-jin
  • September 4, 2018, 11:22
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Controversy is mounting over the use of Huawei 5G network equipment as a growing number of countries are moving to ban equipment from the Chinese producer for security concerns

Controversy is mounting over Huawei equipment as South Korean mobile carriers are about to choose vendors for 5G equipment. At present, an increasing number of countries like Japan and Canada as well as the United States and European countries are refraining from adopting Huawei equipment for security reasons.

According to industry sources, the top three mobile carriers in South Korea are planning to choose their 5G equipment vendors within this month. Possible candidates include Samsung Electronics, Huawei, Ericsson and Nokia.

During the 4G LTE equipment introduction in the past, SK Telecom and KT partnered with Samsung Electronics, Ericsson and Nokia while LG U+ chose Huawei as well as the three. A similar result is likely to come out soon. This is because interworking between LTE and 5G equipment is inevitable.

Back in 2012, the U.S. Congress released a report saying that Huawei equipment can be used for spying purposes. Since then, Huawei equipment has been banned in the American telecom equipment market. More recently, the Australian government blocked the Chinese company from taking part in its 5G projects and the Japanese government is mulling over the same to forestall information leakage. Russia and Canada are following suit, too.

Under the circumstances, disputes are ongoing in South Korea over the same issue. “Stable security is the key in view of the various potential services to be provided by 5G platforms,” said an industry insider. However, LG U+ is claiming that Huawei equipment is indispensible. The current situation hangs heavier on SK Telecom and KT in that the former is the largest mobile carrier in South Korea and the latter was its national communication network operator in the past.