Decision on Huawei access to UK's 5G network apparently delayed again

The general election has caused the government to hold off once more, according to Bloomberg.

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Boris Johnson may let Huawei access the UK's 5G infrastructure.

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The UK's  Dec. 12 general election -- brought on by the Brexit negotiations -- will further delay the country's decision on allowing Huawei access to its 5G network, Bloomberg reported Wednesday. Prime Minister Boris Johnson was apparently gearing up to follow predecessor Theresa May's lead and give the controversial Chinese telecom access to "non-contentious" parts of the UK's next-generation wireless infrastructure.

The move to allow access would have frustrated US President Donald Trump, who banned Huawei because of its alleged links to the Chinese government.

The UK government observed that some of Huawei's technology isn't available in the West, so Britain's next-generation wireless infrastructure could be left behind if it doesn't do business with the Chinese company, the Sunday Times reported. A decision is unlikely to come before 2020, Bloomberg noted.

Watch this: What is going on between Huawei and the US?

Back in April, a leak suggested that Theresa May and the UK's National Security Council would let the scandal-scarred telecoms giant work on "noncore" parts of the infrastructure, resulting in the sacking of defense minister Gavin Williamson. Since then, Johnson has become prime minister, but the political landscape might shift again after the December election.

In August, Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei expressed confidence that the UK wouldn't "say no" to his company's 5G equipment, and praised Johnson as "very decisive." The US actively discouraged its European allies from working with Huawei, and doing so would likely strain the UK's relationship with its ally.

Neither Huawei nor the UK's Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport immediately responded to requests for comment.

First published Oct. 28 at 4:27 a.m. PT.
Updated Oct. 31 at 4:25 a.m. PT: Notes the reported delay.

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