Huawei and ZTE to be kept out of 5G trials; but, that is no good news for Airtel, Jio, Voda-Idea

Huawei, ZTE to be kept out of 5G trials: The current relationship between India and China is standing at a four-decade low pushing China’s Huawei Technologies Co. and ZTE Corp. out of India’s plans to roll out its 5G networks.


India will apply investment rules that were amended on 23 July 2020. The new rules quote national security concerns related to data sharing.


At the same time, the Indian Ministry of Communications is in touch with the country’s private players like Bharti Airtel Ltd., Vodafone Idea Ltd., and Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd. on approvals for 5G trials. These private players were ready for the 5G network trials but these trials were delayed by the coronavirus induced lockdown.

A reflection of India’s decision can be observed in the actions taken by the U.S., U.K., and Australia, which have pushed out these Chinese companies like Huawei, ZTE. Taking an extra step the U.S. Federal Communications Commission has officially announced these two companies as national security threats.

Why India kept Huawei and ZTE out of 5G trials?

The main reason behind this ban from 5G trials is the ongoing tension between both the countries following deadly border clashes in which India lost 20 soldiers.

Huawei and ZTE

Adding the severity, in late June, India banned TikTok and other Chinese apps, citing threats to the country’s sovereignty and security. This further increased the tension between both countries.

Nikhil Batra, Sydney-based analyst at International Data Corp explained: “Telecom infrastructure has become part of national security assets and nations are looking at controlling and regulating them just like they do power and water.”

Batra further explained that the Indian market is already battling infrastructure and regulatory problems. In India, the network equipment market is not fully grown. So, India’s challenges will further increase from this ban.

Role of Reliance

Reliance could be a serious challenge to Huawei as on 15 July the company announced its plan to jump into the 5G network, without giving much information.

Also, read What will be the future of Huawei in France?