France will not impose an outright ban on Huawei’s 5G equipment, but will avoid complete dependence on the Chinese company’s technology, the head of the French cybersecurity agency ANSSI has said.
“What I can say is that there will not be a total ban,” Guillaume Poupard said in a recent interview with local media Les Echos. “But for operators that are not currently using Huawei gear, we are urging them not to,” he added.
Government permits with durations from three to eight years are being granted to French carriers that are already using Huawei equipment in their 5G networks, Poupard said. He added that from next week, those that have not received authorization can consider the lack of response as a rejection of their request after the legal deadline.
The ANSSI head stressed that the decision was made to protect French independence and not as “Huawei bashing or anti-Chinese racism.”
In March, Reuters quoted sources as saying that France would not ban Huawei but would remove its products from the country’s core mobile networks, a strategy similar to the U.K.’s decision made earlier this year.
On Saturday, The Telegraph reported that British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is expected to phase out the use of Huawei’s technology in Britain’s 5G network as soon as this year after the country’s spy agency GCHQ raised new security fears over the U.S.-sanctioned Chinese company.
Contact reporter Ding Yi (firstname.lastname@example.org)