India Does not call Huawei 5G Trials Participants

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Huawei’s logo is seen on a badge pinned on a saree of a lady at the India Mobile Congress in New Delhi, India, Oct. 14, 2019.

NEW DELHI, India— The government of India announced on Tuesday that mobile carriers will be able to conduct 5G trials with equipment manufacturers such as Ericsson, Nokia, and Samsung’s network unit, but did not name China’s Huawei as a participant.

The trials will be conducted in urban, rural, and semi-urban areas by major carriers Reliance Industries’ Jio Infocomm, Bharti Airtel, and Vodafone Idea in collaboration with state-run MTNL, according to a statement from the Ministry of Communications.

The statement did not name Huawei or its smaller Chinese rival ZTE as participants in the network equipment market.

Huawei declined to comment, and ZTE and the Indian ministry did not respond immediately to requests for comment on the list of companies involved.

While India has not named the Chinese participants in the six-month trials, which aim to test 5G gear and technology in a variety of environments, it has not barred them from supplying 5G equipment to carriers.

However, two government officials told Reuters in March that New Delhi will most likely prohibit mobile carriers from using Huawei telecom equipment under procurement rules that will go into effect in June.

In terms of phone users, India is the world’s second-largest market. Authorities are wary of awarding new technology contracts to Chinese companies due to security concerns and a desire to assist local telecoms equipment manufacturers, according to government sources.

In March, the government’s telecoms department stated that, after June 15, carriers could only purchase certain types of equipment from state-approved “trusted sources,” and that New Delhi could also create a “no procurement” list of banned suppliers.

According to Reuters, Huawei and ZTE are likely to be on this embargoed list.

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