11:59 GMT09 May 2021
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    Google has restricted the Chinese telecoms equipment giant Huawei from receiving some updates to the Android operating system, meaning that all its future devices will lose access to Google services including Gmail, YouTube and Google Play Store.

    The move follows US President Donald Trump’s addition of Huawei to a US trading blacklist, which effectively bans Huawei from doing business with American firms.

    Google's spokesperson said the company was “complying with the order and reviewing the implications”. Huawei has issued a response, saying that it “will continue to provide security updates and after-sales services to all existing Huawei and Honor smartphone and tablet products, covering those that have been sold and that are still in stock globally”.

    READ MORE: Google Restricts Huawei's Use of Android: How Does it Affect Users

    The news comes after last week Liang Hua, Chairman of Huawei's Board of Directors, said that the company is ready to sign so-called ‘no-spy agreements’ with the governments of Western countries, including the UK. According to Liang Hua, Huawei is promising to bring their equipment in line with international standards. That is, regulations that ban espionage with the help of installed equipment, as well as not allowing software bookmarks in it and no-backdoors standard.

    On the sidelines of a meeting with British technology partners, Liang Hua noted that the issue of cyber security is not exclusive to just one single supplier or one single company; that this is a common challenge facing the industry and the world.

    Western media that reported on Huawei's offer noted that the Chinese telecoms giant currently has the most advanced, least expensive 5G equipment in the world. They also drew attention to an exchange between the UK’s Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, Jeremy Wright, and the head of Huawei.

    The British cabinet minister said that the advantages of cheap equipment would not trump security concerns. Liang Hua replied by saying that cyber-security is indeed an important factor to consider when making a decision, “but at the same time it should be a balanced solution between cyber security and economic prosperity”.

    READ MORE: Huawei Wants to Sign 'No-Spy' Deals With Gov'ts, Including UK — Board Chair

    Oleg Matveychev, a Russian political scientist and professor at the Higher School of Economics, believes the allegations that Huawei's new 5G networks could become a means of espionage is a pretext to prevent the Chinese company from entering foreign markets. According to him, all of the Western nations will react differently to Huawei's initiative.

    “There won't be a common reaction, countries will be divided here, different governments will act differently. Those governments that resort to protectionism to protect their companies, they, in principle, don't want anything from Huawei. But most will take advantage of this offer and will conduct the relevant certification of the Chinese company's equipment”.

    The Russian expert's point of view is shared by the Assistant Director of the Centre for Regional Security Studies of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Dr. Yang Danzhi.

    “Some Western countries led by the United States, in response to Huawei’s proposal, will continue to impose restrictions and put pressure on it. At the moment there are no signs that their position may change. However, it is possible that some political leaders will make a positive assessment of Huawei’s statement and note its efforts in this direction. However, based on the information that we currently have, it’s not realistic to expect Western countries to change their stance and unfair attitude towards Huawei overnight. Only as a result of great practical efforts and after a certain time, it will be possible to prove the unlawfulness of demonising Huawei. I believe that for Huawei, it is very important to take active steps in attracting a large number of customers and win over the support of the international community”.

    Kira Godovanuk, from the Institute of Europe at the Russia Academy of Sciences, said that the UK hasn't yet made its final decision on whether to allow the Chinese tech firm to have access to its market and whether to include Huawei technology as it builds out its 5G network.

    According to the latest information, within the UK cabinet, there is a consolidated opinion that the creation of a 5G network is impossible without cooperation with Huawei. The company is seen as the only tech giant that can provide a breakthrough for the UK’s digital economy, the expert said.

    READ MORE: Theresa May Fires UK Defence Secretary Williamson Over Huawei Leak

    “This is a very sensitive issue; I believe that the UK will try to manoeuver between the United States and China. It doesn't want to confront China, and is very interested in cooperating with China. At the same time, it's under very heavy pressure from the United States. Perhaps Jeremy Hunt’s statement was triggered by, among other things, recent talks with Mike Pompeo. At the same time, Hunt is openly demonstrating his ambitions to become the leader of the Conservative Party in the event of Theresa May’s resignation. So the Huawei issue also affects the internal political situation. Therefore, my prediction is that the UK will try to come up with some kind of a balanced solution, which to some extent will support US policy and at the same time won't cause resentment in China”.

    Huawei has already signed more than 40 commercial 5G deals: 25 in Europe, 10 in the Middle East and six in Asia.

    Views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the speakers and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

    The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.


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