Trump administration trying to persuade allies to avoid using China's Huawei: Report

File photo of the logo of Huawei Technologies. Photograph:( Reuters )

Reuters Washington, DC, USA Nov 23, 2018, 08.56 AM (IST)

The US government is trying to persuade wireless and internet providers in allied countries to avoid telecommunications equipment from China’s Huawei Technologies, the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday.

US officials have reached out to their government counterparts and telecom executives in friendly countries where Huawei equipment is already in wide use about what they see as cybersecurity risks, according to the WSJ report, which cited unnamed people familiar with the situation.

Huawei has come under scrutiny in the United States recently.

Intelligence agency leaders and others have said they are concerned that Huawei and other Chinese companies may be beholden to the Chinese government or ruling Communist Party, raising the risk of espionage.

Washington has been considering increasing financial aid for telecommunications development in countries that shun Chinese-made equipment, the WSJ reported.

One of the government’s concerns is based on the use of Chinese telecom equipment in countries that host US military bases, such as Germany, Italy and Japan, the report added.

A US Department of Commerce spokesman said in a statement that the department would remain vigilant against any threat to US national security. 

Huawei did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

On Friday, the Hong Kong shares of rival ZTE Corp fell as much as 5.6 per cent, dragging down the sector. They recouped some losses to trade down 2 per cent around midday, while the firm's Shenzhen shares were down 3 per cent.

ZTE's value has nearly halved this year, battered by a three-month US government ban on American firms selling parts to the firm, and a subsequent $1.4 billion settlement.

On Friday, an index tracking major telecoms firms on the mainland dropped more than 3 per cent.

Earlier this week the company said it had signed 22 commercial contracts for 5G networks.

It will also open a new information security lab in Germany that will enable source code reviews, in a step aimed at winning regulators' confidence before the country's 5G mobile spectrum auction, a German regulator told Reuters last month.

Story highlights

Washington has been considering increasing financial aid for telecommunications development in countries that shun Chinese-made equipment