The UK government is leaning towards allowing Huawei to continue its involvement with the UK’s 5G networks, according to sources in Whitehall

UK prime minister, Boris Johnson, is set to announce that Huawei will be allowed to participate in the UK’s 5G network rollout, despite pressure from the US government to ban the Chinese tech giant.

The Times newspaper reported that the PM will allow Huawei to continue to sell network infrastructure equipment to the country’s mobile network operators, despite US assertions that it poses a risk to national security.

Huawei is already working with all four of the UK’s MNOs on their fledgling 5G networks, following a newly added 5G test site with O2. The Chinese tech giant already enjoys a near 35 per cent share of the UK’s 4G network. The fact that non-standalone 5G networks are built on top of existing 4G infrastructure would have made any subsequent ban on Huawei hugely problematic for UK operators.

An official decision is expected to be announced before Christmas, with operators demanding clarity before they ramp up their 5G network offerings. An official government spokesperson told The Times that Boris Johnson was leaning towards green lighting Huawei’s involvement in UK 5G.   

“There have been further meetings about Huawei in recent days and the view that is forming is the same as the Theresa May view of the world, which was to allow them into the non-contentious parts of the network,” a Whitehall source told journalists at The Times.

The decision would mirror that taken by the German authorities earlier this month, as Europe’s biggest economy opted to allow Huawei to be involved in its 5G mobile networks.  

Also in the news

UK govt backs shared rural network 

London to lay fibre in the Tube

eir launches 5G network in Ireland