Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Is the US Embassy Overreacting? It Bans China’s Huawei and ZTE from Contracts with Local Companies

The United States Embassy in Nassau will no longer do business with companies in the Bahamas that use Chinese technology like Huawei and ZTE.

The Tribune reported that its company is one such local business that received a letter from the embassy asking for the manufacture disclosure of the equipment used.

US Embassy Public Affairs Officer Daniel Durazo told the media agency that “the 2019 National Defense Authorisation Act (NDAA) prohibits the US government from entering into contracts with entities (ie companies or service providers) that use telecommunications equipment, systems, or services from Huawei, ZTE, Dahua, Hikvision, Hytera, or their subsidiaries and affiliates.”

What are Huawei and ZTE?

Huawei and ZTE are telecommunication giants in China.

Huawei is a leading global provider of information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure and smart devices. It makes networking products and telecommunication systems. Some of its products include 5G networks, wireless broadbands, cloud services and data centers. It operates in more than 170 countries and regions.

Huawei will not be 'killed' - CGTN
Photo credit: CGTN

ZTE sells smartphones with products sold by AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile in the United States. Its products include 5G networks, big data, and cloud services.

ZTE business operations halted after US denial order - CGTN
Photo credit: CGTN

Is the US overly concern?

The United States contends that these Chinese manufactured devices are national security threats as they may contain spying mechanisms.

In 2019, FBI Director Christopher Wray said of Huawei, “It provides the capacity to maliciously modify or steal information and it provides the capacity to conduct undetected espionage,” meaning that Huawei will help China to spy and or attack the U.S.A.

However, these are all allegations since there is no public evidence that shows that Huawei and ZTE will endanger the privacy or security of the United States.

What other countries have banned the Chinese-made  products?

Canada, The United Kingdom, Japan, and India are some countries that have banned the use of Huawei and/or ZTE in their country.

Japan’s government effectively banned China’s Huawei and ZTE from official contracts, while the country’s top three telecom operators planned to do the same. Reports stated that the U.S government had given Tokyo information about the security risks involving the use of Chinese-made equipment.

In 2018, Canadian authorities arrested the founder and CEO of  Huawei after the U.S. government charged her with fraud linked to alleged violations of Iran sanctions. She denies the charges.

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