Controversial Huawei sets up shop in Banbury

While Huawei has got Britain’s comrades in the States paranoid about links to the Chinese military, the UK has greenlighted a security centre in Banbury, Oxfordshire.

According to the MD of the centre, it’s “like a glasshouse – transparent, readily accessible and open to regulators and our customers.” But US lawmakers have been aggressively trying to block links between Huawei and its bigwig telcos such as Sprint. Manufacturers are subject to the influence of the Chinese military, says an open letter from lawmakers posted in October.

Opening doors for Huawei can also open doors for foreign espionage, the wearers of tinfoil hats claim.

That was, however, for a large scale American network – not a security centre in Oxfordshire’s Cherwell District. According to Reuters the centre will be used to test hardware and software against security threats.

Huawei has been busy. It was selected by China Mobile to build a 40G network and has won a contract in Australia to test LTE spectrum in Australia, where it wants to become a top brand. 

Indeed if the paranoid USA is right in its suspicions, raised again late November when it annoyed the States with an undeclared acquisition, it will have a difficult time shutting Huawei out. Huawei and rival ZTE continue to do their best to convince the United States they are no threat.