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Australian Govt Confirms Huawei Ban

Robert Clark
News Analysis
Robert Clark
10/30/2013

Huawei's run of positive news in hard-to-crack western markets has skidded to a halt.

Just two weeks ago, CEO Ren Zhengfei scored a meeting with UK Treasurer George Osborne as the company announced a $200 million UK research facility, despite a UK government security review of Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. 's contracts with BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA).

Osborne even allowed himself to be photographed with Ren, whose PLA background makes Huawei a security threat, US intelligence agencies have claimed.

Last week, Huawei called a media briefing with Denmark's TDC to reveal it had been successfully vetted by Danish intelligence, allowing it to clinch a $700 million services contract with the firm. (See: Huawei Clears Danish Security to Oust Ericsson.)

Just as promising for the Chinese vendor, the new Australian government has been making noise about ending Huawei's exclusion from the publicly funded NBN project.

The communications minister described Huawei as "a credible business," while the trade minister, who is currently negotiating a free-trade agreement with China, said the company had a "big future" in Australia. Huawei Australia chairman John Lord said in China last week that the company was "waiting to find out" if the ban would be lifted.

But those hopes have been dashed. Australia's Attorney General George Brandis has affirmed the ban that had been placed by the previous government in early 2012 on security grounds, reportedly prompting "shock and dismay" from Chinese diplomats.

Huawei has not responded to requests for comment. China's foreign affairs spokesperson Hua Chunying called for both sides to work together create a "fair environment" for business.

— Robert Clark, contributing editor, special to Light Reading

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Chomchom
Chomchom
11/1/2013 | 11:04:57 AM
Be smart like Australian Gov't
If you don't live in a country that is governed by the communist party, you never understand that there is absolutely everything in that country that the government can confisticate or demand you to give up. If not, you will be sent to prison for a long time for "being against the government". The Chinese government are behind all the hackings via the companies establish in US and all other Western countries. When will our government and all the companies be smart like the Australian government by banning all the Chinese companies like Huawei?
MordyK
MordyK
10/31/2013 | 4:54:58 PM
Re: NSA
Or not :)

I find it ironic that if the US does it its called espionage but if China does it its called hacking. Can anyone clarify the difference?
Ray@LR
[email protected]
10/31/2013 | 2:50:41 PM
Re: NSA
Maybe we should start a special NSA gag section.... this one is going to run and run!
DanJones
DanJones
10/31/2013 | 11:01:56 AM
Re: NSA
*Hollow laugh*
MordyK
MordyK
10/30/2013 | 8:41:29 PM
NSA
They couln't be hacked by the NSA, so out they went :)
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