5G: why the big emerging countries support Huawei

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Posted on Jan. 15, 2020, 4:36 p.m.Updated on Jan 15, 2020 at 4:39 p.m.

The United States blocked Huawei,
Europe still hesitates,

    but the big emerging countries are opening their arms to the Chinese giant on 5G. As it goes through one of the worst storms
since its birth over thirty years ago,

    the Chinese telecoms champion can be proud to have received the support, these last weeks, of several heavyweights of the southern hemisphere who say they are ready to give him the keys of the next standard of mobile telephony.

We must distinguish the small developing countries which, for economic reasons, have no other choice than to work with Huawei and the large emerging countries which refuse to block the Chinese group in principle. Explains François Godement, adviser for Asia at the Montaigne Institute in Paris.

Present in 180 countries, Huawei has signed at this point sixty 5G contracts with operators around the world. In emerging countries, the Chinese group has capitalized on its long-standing presence and extensive lobbying work. But the political rapprochement between China and the emerging powers (Brazil, Russia, India, South Africa in particular) – which concretely resulted in the launch by Beijing of two new multilateral banks – also helped.

Green light from india

At the end of December, India authorized “ all actors »From the market (including Huawei) to participate in the first 5G experiments to be held in the coming weeks. Indian telecom operators have yet to buy
the 5G frequencies necessary to transmit the signal,

    nor chose their equipment manufacturers. But this green light in principle was nevertheless a real relief for the Chinese group, the world number one in telecom equipment.

India is the second largest telecoms market in the world (behind China) with 1.1 billion mobile subscribers, according to the Indian regulator. ” We thank the Indian government for its continued trust in Huawei “Said Jay Chen, the group’s CEO in India. ” India is very concerned about security issues, however tempers François Godement. Like some European countries, it avoids taking a formal position and continues to explore alternatives.

Brazil doesn’t want a veto

A little earlier, it was Brazil that already refused on principle to block Huawei from 5G. The new president Jair Bolsonaro is however reputed close to the American president Donald Trump for whom
the supposed links between Huawei and the Chinese regime

    justify its ban on the US 5G market.

Brazil has certainly launched an audit on the security risks posed by 5G, but the country does not want to hear of a veto. ” Huawei is already well established in Brazil. The group works with many companies and universities, so it’s a closed subject “Hamilton Mourão, vice president of Brazil, recently told The Financial Times.

Europe, Huawei’s second market

Elsewhere, things are more advanced: in Russia, Huawei has already signed a partnership with the operator MTS to launch pilot 5G networks. For its part, MTN, the leading operator on the African continent, is working with Huawei on a joint 5G innovation program.

But Huawei is mainly suspended from the decision of several European countries, including
Germany, the United Kingdom


    With 29% of turnover, the Europe Middle East and Africa (EMEA) zone is the group’s second market after China. Far ahead of the rest of Asia (11.4%) and South America (6.6%).


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