"Right now Huawei and Erikson are the two providers of 5G", Lord told the Atlantic Council on Monday. "We [the Defense Department] are talking to Ericsson… what we are contemplating right now is whether we want to broaden our onshore base of production".
"Right now Huawei has very good capability at a good cost. Our concern is security and what you trade off", Lord said. "We need innovation infrastructure. We can do it but we haven't figured it all out yet […] This is critical for us for military utilization".
Lord acknowledged that the United States needed to improve its effectiveness in sharing intelligence about 5G security concerns with European allies on the Huawei issue.
According to The New York Times, citing sources familiar with the discussions, European and Asian officials have complained, however, privately that Washington's latest intelligence briefings for its allies did not share any sensitive information proving that the Chinese government has used Huawei to illegally obtain data.
Huawei has recently faced allegations that it had been linked to the Chinese government and even involved in alleged spying on its behalf, something that the company has vehemently denied. In August, US President Donald Trump enacted legislation banning government agencies from using services from Huawei and ZTE, another Chinese company, amid the ongoing scandal.