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Huawei boss says no state interference in Irish mobile networks

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Huawei said it will aid plans to start commercialising 5G technology for the sector in the second half of this year. Photo: Reuters

Huawei said it will aid plans to start commercialising 5G technology for the sector in the second half of this year. Photo: Reuters

Huawei said it will aid plans to start commercialising 5G technology for the sector in the second half of this year. Photo: Reuters

Huawei's Irish chief executive says that his company would reject any requests from Chinese state authorities for 'backdoor entry' into 5G mobile networks that the company is building in Ireland and Europe.

Jijay Shen made the remarks at Mobile World Congress, the global telecoms conference under way in Barcelona this week.

Asked about the possibility of Chinese authorities insisting on access to Huawei's telecoms networks in western countries, as US authorities allege might happen, Mr Shen said that the telecom giant has ruled out such a course of action.

"Our founder, Mr Ren [Zhengfei] already said we will not provide such a service if it's requested from the government," said Mr Shen, speaking to the Irish Independent.

"Secondly, we always comply with local law in different countries. In Ireland, we will follow Irish law, 100pc."

Huawei, which employs 170 people in Ireland and is involved in the phone network rollouts of most major Irish telecoms operators, has been at the centre of a row with US authorities over whether its 'next generation' 5G mobile infrastructure represents a security risk for western countries.

But while US commentators have argued that the company's ties with Chinese authorities are too tight, most EU countries have rejected those fears.

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