Rift Between US and European Carriers Opens Over Huawei

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CTIA, a trade group representing top US wireless providers, disagreed with European and Asian counterparts over alleged security threats from Chinese equipment maker Huawei. A Feb 14 release from GSMA, a London-based wireless industry group, urged European lawmakers not to ban Huawei as a supplier. But CTIA, a Washington-based group, responded with its own statement saying the GSMA “does not represent the views of all wireless operators or all regions.” The divergent statements underscore a fissure opening between Washington and carriers and regulators around the world, who’re starting to re-evaluate US warnings that China’s largest technology corporation aids Beijing in espionage. European carriers offered to cooperate with their governments in devising steps to ward off vulnerabilities. CTIA, with members that include US market leaders AT&T and Verizon, has urged US regulators to go slow in crafting rules on equipment security.

“It looks like [CTIA is] scared of the impact of European policy-making on the rollout of their 5G networks” that will offer advanced speeds, said Gigi Sohn, Benton senior fellow and fellow at the Georgetown University Law Center Institute for Technology Law and Policy. “It seems they’re concerned that if Europe does so, it would become the de facto standard.”

Rift Between U.S. and European Carriers Opens Over Huawei