MPs in Westminster have claimed that there is ‘clear collusion’ between tech giant Huawei and the Chinese state, citing a new Parliament Defence Committee report into 5G security.
The report pointed to allegations that Huawei is funded by the Chinese government, as well as potentially having to comply with China’s national security laws.
Previous claims have been made about Huawei’s ownership model and receipt of state subsidies.
In response to the report, MPs say that the UK government must consider bringing forward the 2027 deadline set for the firm to remove its 5G kits from the UK’s mobile networks to 2025.
The report cites testimony that states the Chinese government “had financed the growth of Huawei with some $75bn [£57bn] over the past three years”, which allowed it to sell its hardware at lower prices.
As well as this, the report highlights a claim that Huawei had allegedly “engaged in a variety of intelligence, security, and intellectual property activities”.
Tobias Ellwood MP, the chair of the defence committee, unveiled the report stating: “Protecting the public and preserving our nation’s security are amongst the principal responsibilities of government.
“The decision to embed a technology that compromises this would constitute a gross dereliction of these duties. The West must urgently unite to advance a counterweight to China’s tech dominance.”
According to Sky News, Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden stated that the government was aware that “large private companies in China often have links to the Chinese Communist Party, and this was one of the factors that led to Huawei being designated as a high-risk vendor,” during witness hearings for the committee’s inquiry.
In response, a spokesperson from Huawei said: “This report lacks credibility, as it is built on opinion rather than fact.
“We are sure people will see through these accusations of collusion and remember instead what Huawei has delivered for Britain over the past 20 years,” they added.
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This could be the final nail in the coffin for Huawei as it attempts to move into the UK 5G market, although it was not looking good already.
This led to the announcement in mid-July of the ban on Huawei 5G kits being used in the UK’s telecoms network by 2021, and complete removal by 2027, after pressure on the UK Government by the Trump administration into the firm’s collusion with Beijing.
Ministers claimed they were “placing national security as a priority” in their decision to ban the purchase of Huawei equipment after 2021.
Last week (2nd October) cybersecurity analysts carrying out research into Huawei networks in the UK last year discovered a major vulnerability that left them open to cyberattacks.
In a report, the vulnerability was flagged as being of ‘national concern’ and Huawei’s software engineering and cybersecurity practices were criticised.