UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson is going to allow Huawei to build out its 5G network, but it'll have a limited role.
Johnson is defying US President Trump, with this decision. Since banning Huawei from working with any company in the US, the Trump Administration has been putting pressure on its allies to no longer use Huawei equipment as well. And the UK is the US' biggest ally. But it appears that Johnson doesn't see Huawei as big of a threat as Trump does.
Huawei will have a limited role in UK's 5G networks
While Huawei will be allowed to use its equipment in the UK for 5G, it won't be without limitations.
Apparently, Huawei will be excluded from "core" parts of 5G networks. And there is also a 35% cap on "high risk vendor access" to the non-core parts of 5G networks.
Basically what this means for UK wireless carriers is that they can use Huawei, but they better use someone else to build out their network as well. Like Samsung, Ericsson or Nokia. As Huawei is limited to about a third of the non-core network.
Huawei will also be excluded from areas near military bases and nuclear sites.
Huawei is "reassured" after this decision by the UK Prime Minister
A Huawei spokesperson said that the company is "reassured by the UK government's confirmation that we can continue working with our customers to keep the 5G roll-out on track. It gives the UK access to world-leading technology and ensures a competitive market."
The UK decision to allow Huawei equipment on its 5G networks isn't much of a surprise. Many of the 4G LTE networks in the country already use Huawei equipment. As it is usually cheaper and better than the competition.
Though, 5G has drawn security concerns from the US, particularly after the company was put on the entity list last year. The US has long accused Huawei of being spyware for the Chinese government. Claiming that it is funded by the Chinese government, when there is no such evidence that is true. It had criticism under President Obama, but Trump really pushed it to the edge. And outright banned them from working in the US.
While President Trump was trying to force allies not to use Huawei equipment, Beijing warned of "substantial" repercussions if Huawei is excluded outright from the process. So you can imagine that this put the UK in a pretty awkward situation. And instead opted to give the middle finger to President Trump.