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Huawei 5G backdoor entry unproven

The controversy surrounding the Chinese telecom giant was triggered by the US stance that Huawei should be barred from 5G network rollouts due to concerns on alleged cyber snooping.

, ET Bureau|
Updated: Sep 25, 2019, 11.40 PM IST
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New Delhi: AJ Paulraj, chairman of the government’s 5G forum, has backed Huawei’s play in India’s 5G trials and deployments, saying the US’ assertion of the Chinese company’s telecom equipment having a backdoor entry has never been formally verified, and the bitter spat between the two countries is impacting commerce at both sides.

“The US government feels that Huawei 5G is a threat to the national interest and is finding various ways to contain the company, saying it can do backdoor in their equipment although none of that is publicly reported,” Paulraj, also a Stanford University professor, said at an industry event late on Tuesday.

The controversy surrounding the Chinese telecom giant was triggered by the US stance that Huawei should be barred from 5G network rollouts due to concerns on alleged cyber snooping owing to its alleged proximity to its home government.

China and Huawei have called on India to take a fair call on the company’s participation in India’s 5G trials, and subsequent deployment of the next generation technology.

Huawei, in fact, has warned that it might reconsider fresh investments in the country if it is barred from the next-generation network rollouts. Huawei has so far invested more than $3.5 billion in India and employs close to 5,000 people.

India has said that its decision will keep in mind ‘national interests’. “China’s Huawei has become a world leader in 5G infrastructure technology in terms of a cost-performance basis,” Paulraj said, adding that among 5G infrastructure vendors, the company has emerged as a market leader in patents.

Earlier, Huawei’s deputy chairman Ken Hu told ET that the company has so far entered into as many as 60 contracts worldwide for 5G trials and commercial deployments. Huawei’s rivals include Samsung, Nokia, and Ericsson. China, according to the Indo-American scientist, hugely invests in the Intellectual Proprietary Rights (IPR) and Research and Development (R&D) activities.

“5G wireless networks are expected to revolutionise everything, from the Internet of Things (IoT), autonomous driving, smart cities to Virtual Reality (VR),” Paulraj said.

He added that the current standoff between the US and China is nothing but a clash between rising and ruling technology powers with 5G at the forefront.

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