Huawei claims that the 5G Cybersecurity Law be applied in an "objective" and "proportionate" manner

Removing a provider from the network would cost each operator almost 300 million euros.

Huawei claims that the 5G Cybersecurity Law be applied in an "objective" and "proportionate" manner

Removing a provider from the network would cost each operator almost 300 million euros


The director of Cybersecurity of Huawei Spain, Gonzalo Erro, has demanded that the new 5G Cybersecurity Law, which reserves the possibility of vetoing companies in strategic areas for considering them high risk, be applied in an "objective, proportionate and non-discretionary" manner on the carrier providers.

Huawei has presented its cybersecurity policies at its Transparency Center in Brussels in a meeting with the media, attended by Europa Press, in which it has emphasized that its products meet the required technical standards pending regulatory development.

In this way, the Asian manufacturer has highlighted its position in the face of a possible veto in the event that the Government decides to include the company in the list of high-risk suppliers, which would leave them outside the core of the networks by law, radio in strategic areas and support centers.

In the case of Huawei, the Government could use one of the articles of the law that refers to the interference of third countries and national security, as happened in the United States during the Presidency of Donald Trump. The firm has defended that it is owned by its employees and not by the Chinese government.

"We consider that article 14 is planned for exceptional situations. It comes from the 'toolbox', which is not something that has been made specifically for Spain (...) An exceptional mechanism has to be available to the Government (...) but its activation also has to be in exceptional situations", Erro has underlined.

After approving the 5G cybersecurity project by Royal Decree, the Government must publish in June a list of providers that it considers to be high risk and the list of strategic locations in which they cannot be present.

As established in the text, the companies on the list will receive a prior summons 15 days before it is made public to be received at a hearing and present their allegations. In the event that the veto was established, the manufacturer would have the option to appeal, "an option to be assessed at the time", in Erro's opinion.

In September, the Executive must complete the regulatory development, which will reveal the final list of the specific components of the network in which these providers are banned, while the operators will deliver a report on their supply chains.

Erro has described the royal decree as "a step that should be taken at some point" and has stressed that the content is in line with what Huawei expected after the 2020 public consultation.

The uncertainty about Huawei's legal future in this field has led the main operators to opt for Ericsson and Nokia for the core ('core') and the radio of their new 5G networks. Although, the director of the Chinese company has shown confidence that they will continue working with the operators.

The director of Cybersecurity of Huawei Spain has warned that a possible veto of the Asian company would turn this market into practically a duopoly between the Swedish and Finnish firm, which could have repercussions on the costs of the 'telecos'.

At the same time, he has warned that, if this situation occurs, Spain could lose competitiveness compared to other European countries and delay the implementation of 5G.

A report by Oxford Economics calculated that withdrawing a large provider from the network of one of the Spanish telecommunications operators would have an average cost of 292 million euros and would delay the arrival of 5G to five million people by a year. Likewise, the negative impact on GDP would amount to 3,700 million euros in an average scenario that could worsen to 8,100 million in the worst case.

At the same time, it would force the main operators to face extra spending in the middle of the investment cycle for the deployment of 5G in a market marked by hyper-competitiveness and the strength of 'low cost'.

The firm has presented its cybersecurity standards and they have been confident that they meet the requirements of the Spanish Government.

Huawei has a 200-strong unit that works independently of the product development pipeline and ensures that all company services and devices meet cybersecurity requirements.

"It's our top priority... It's a business issue," Huawei Senior Cybersecurity Advisor Koen Cloesen said. Among other aspects, he has underlined that the company also has a code traceability policy that allows the author of each line to be identified.

Likewise, Huawei complements its internal privacy policy with external and independent certifications of its devices carried out by laboratories such as Dekra in Spain.