The Chinese telecom manufacturer is currently under pressure in Australia, due to authorities scared of the threat Huawei poses to national security.
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If we had to compare Australia’s security’s concerns about Huawei to some other nation, we could say the situation is very similar to the US. It is clear that both countries share the same fear and use the same words to try and ban the Chinese telecom from accessing their market.
The difference is the US outright banned Huawei from bidding on major US contracts and may even go as far as banning the company entirely from doing any business in the US. Meanwhile, Australia still has a very small tolerance for the company. But the influence and fears come from the US, who already back in 2012 pressured the Australian government to ban Huawei, while at the same time forming part of the “Five Eyes” who spied the entire globe, as revealed by Snowden and WikiLeaks a few years ago. It may be ironic, to claim a company is a threat due to “spying”, while at the same time massively spying everybody else. But we already covered this in a past article, that we’ll link at the end.
Now, Australian officials are trying to stop Huawei from participating in the deployment of 5G networks in the country. The country already successfully stopped Huawei from building a 4 000 kilometres long underwater telecommunications cable network between the Solomon Islands and Australia, by offering to cover part of the cost themselves if they chose Australia to build the cable. Australian lawmakers are working towards a total ban of Huawei in 5G contracts. Meanwhile, in the UK, a similar situation is developing, with British authorities starting to get nervous about Huawei and considering action against the telecom manufacturer.
With tensions between China and Australia quite high, this situation could worsen the current political agreements between both countries.