Huawei officials offer to launch cyber security center in Poland

Company logo at the office of Huawei in Beijing. Thomas Peter Reuters  File

President Donald Trump is likely to ban Chinese telecom equipment from United States wireless networks by signing an executive order as soon as next week, according to Politico. MWC 2019, the world's largest mobile industry show, runs from February 25 to 28 in Barcelona. Australia has indicated the Chinese firm as well as another Chinese telecom ZTE, will not be involved in its 5G developments as has New Zealand.

It comes as the European Union weighs the introduction of a new sanctions regime against companies or countries involved in cyber-espionage and intellectual property theft.

Chinese IT firm Huawei has told the United Kingdom government that it "has never and will never" allow its technology to be used for spying.

US charges of stealing technology and violating sanctions on Iran have since been issued against the company, sparking new tensions in relations between the United States and China.

The U.S. has previously cited national security as a reason to not use Chinese equipment, alleging that hardware from such companies could provide backdoor access for the Chinese government into American networks.

In Germany, Reuters said ministers have been meeting to discuss the possibility of a Huawei 5G ban after Angela Merkel earlier this week set conditions for the company's participation in the nation's new mobile network, including guarantees from the company that it would not hand over information to the Chinese government. An unnamed source "close to the administration" told the publication: "Contracts are going out now... Extra stigma could change the situation out in the countries on this major decision", the source said. Technology and networking environments are evolving. "So there's a lot of pressure now to get this EO out there".

'We routinely urge allies and partners to consider such risks and exercise similar vigilance in ensuring the security of their own telecoms networks and supply chains, including when awarding contracts, ' the spokesperson added.

Trump's telecom directive, which will invoke the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, has been finished for months.

"Recently, Huawei has been under constant attack by some countries and politicians".

"We haven't been able to do our work as members of parliament", said Senator Elisabeth Lamure, who is also vice-chair of the upper house's committee for economic affairs. It is unclear if that will still happen.

This is one of the key takeaways of the speech a Huawei representative gave late Thursday, according to Reuters. He was detained by local authorities together with a state security official suspected of collusion with the first accused. "This will help ensure that our products are better prepared for a more complex security environment both now and in the future". "We need to figure out how to do this now".

The French Senate on Wednesday rejected proposed legislation aimed at toughening checks on telecoms equipment despite the U.S. warnings.

However, Trump's diktat, if it comes before the MWC event, will reinforce the commitment of the U.S on the sensitive issue.

"The geopolitics of 5G have come home to roost", said Triolo, "and Barcelona is now the epicenter of the whole thing".

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