Up till now, Canada is the only member of the Five Eyes intelligence-sharing network which is yet to formally announce it’s blocking of Huawei from it’s 5G network even though the country has effectively blocked the Chinese tech giant which has forced other telecom companies to exclude partnering with them.
With that, Canada is able to maintain a good rapport between both the United States and China while both giant nations brawl over Huawei hwich has been long banned in the US while the country also persuade other western countries to join. The United Kingdom recently announced it was dropping Huawei as well as removing all it’s infrastructures from the country.
The other members of the Five Eye allies which includes the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Australia have been put under pressure by the US to drop Huawei based on security reasons.
Speaking of the 5G, this is the fifth wireless network connection which is 50 to 100 times much faster than the previous 4G or 4th generation networks and this technology is expected to change the face of network connection forever enhancing IoT and improving tasks such as surgery, self driving cars, smart home appliance and so forth.
Canada however had not been straightforward on whether it was going to officially announce bannig Huawei entirely from the country’s 5G network program.
Meanwhile the country’s biggest telecom companies Bell Canada and Telus have both partnered with Swedish Ericsson and Finland’s Nokia to build the fifth generation telecom infrastructure in the country so as to be able to ditch Huawei for the project despite using Huawei 4G gear.
“The absence of a solution will eventually settle all problems,” said a source directly familiar with the approach taken by the Liberal government of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
Another large wireless operator in Canada, Rogers communication Inc, announced back in 2018 that it was using Ericsson’s 5G equipment which showed these other alternatives were being implemented by some companies.
What made Huawei a top contender back in 2019 was because the company’s equipment were much cheaper and faster compare to others such as Ericsson and Nokia.
Meanwhile US government under Trump has vowed to further restrict Huawei by cracking down on its access to commercially available chips.
Operators in Canada feel the U.S. curbs mean they have no choice but to sideline Huawei in 5G networks, at least for now, say the sources, who requested anonymity given the sensitivity of the situation.
“They’ve done the political calculus and said ‘The best thing for us is to do nothing and if we do nothing we don’t upset the Chinese, we don’t upset the Americans’,” said a source familiar with what government officials are saying.
Even though the US might have fallen short of the good sights of China, other countries still want to maintain that right sight with the world most populous country. Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou is currently fighting extradition to the United States since he was detained by the Canadian police back in December 2018.
Beijing on the other hand arrested Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig who are both Canadian citizens and were both charged with espionage. Canada says gaining their freedom is a top priority.
“If it weren’t for the two Michaels, Canada would have already said it would not be using Huawei 5G technology,” a diplomatic source said. Government officials deny the fate of the two men is linked to 5G.
Back in 2018, both the New Zealand and Australia blocked service providers from using Huawei 5G equipment and that continues to mount pressures on Canada as to whether it will publicly state the fact that Huawei should be pulled out of the country even though all odds points to this fact.
Some sources close to the issue stated that the country hasn’t yet reached a firm conclusion and so would not be rushed adding that the officials were taking their time in order to avoid the Britain’s predicament.
“That underscores why you need to get this right and why you only get one chance … we don’t want to find ourselves in a situation like the Brits where we’re having to go back and put the toothpaste back in the tube,” said the source.
The office of Canada Innovation Minister Navdeep Bains – who is formally charged with making a decision on Huawei and 5G – said in a statement that it could not comment on a particular company. It did not say when an announcement would be made.
Meanwhile a Bell Canada spokesperson made it known back in May that he has no insight into the government thinking on Huawei and 5G while Telus didn’t respond to a request for comment over the issue.
Huawei said in a statement that it believed Ottawa “when it says it is taking the time to make a considered decision”.