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The UK and Russia steer away from China, emphasise on the use of domestic equipment by tech companies, 5G mobile networks

A decision was taken bu Russian govt to use exclusively Russia-made equipment in the deployment of 5G networks in the country

Russia’s State Commission on Radio Frequencies (SCRF) announced on November 23 that only the equipment of Russian origin will be used for the development of 5G network in the country. According to Comnews Russia, after a meeting of the SCRF, Deputy Head of the Ministry of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media, Oleg Ivanov said that a decision was taken to use exclusively Russia-made equipment in the deployment of 5G networks in the country. He said that during the construction of the Internet of Things (IoT) networks, base stations with the status of domestic equipment would be needed. Ivanov added that operators would be able to build a 5G network in all frequency bands in which they already have the right to built LTE networks.

The frequency ranges approved for 5G services in Russia are: 694-790 MHz, 2,300-2,400 MHz, 2,570-2,620 MHz, 4,400-4,990 MHz and 24.25-27.5 MHz. Rostec, a Russian state-owned holding conglomerate, has reportedly been identified as the basic contractor to ensure the production of domestic equipment for 5G networks. Recently, a roadmap was approved for the development of 5G in Russia according to which the delivery of Russian origin equipment would commence from 2024. PJSC MegaFon has predicted a delay of 5-6 years in the introduction of 5G technology in Russia. The press service of the Russian telecom operator said that PJSC “MTS” was ready to purchase competitive Russian equipment with required characteristics, quality and prices. In December 2019, the company had signed an agreement with the Element Group of Companies and Skoltech regarding the development and production of 5G in Russia. This year in October, a 5G pilot zone was set up in Skolkovo within the framework of this project.

General Director of Spectrum Management LLC, Igor Guryanov said that all the existing network in Russia were currently working with the NSA (Non Standalone) architecture and that assuming that transition to SA (Standalone Nwetworking) architecture could be done by 2023, full-scale 5G networks were unlikely to be ready before 2025. Agreeing with Guryanov, Vitaly Solonin, Head f the Wireless Technologies Depertment at J’son & Partners Consulting, said that requirement to have exclusively Russian origin equipment would delay the launch of 5G network in the country.

MTS is ready to deploy 5G-ready dedicated network powered by Ericsson for Polymetal, one of the world’s largest producers of gold and silver producer at the Nezhdaninskoye gold deposit in the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia). The network that will be build on Ericsson Dedicated Networks solution, is expected to be introduced by the end of 2020. The network will provide critical communications infrastructure and the IoT.

The UK warns tech companies of doing business in China

The United Kingdom has launched a website warning about the consequences of doing business in China or accepting Chinese investment. The website has reportedly been created in response to demand from the tech sector. The website has a number of features including case studies, guides to conducting due diligence, links to consultancies and warning about the possible violation of ethical, security and commercial norms. The website also suggests measures like “legal steps to protect your IP in China”.

UK’s Digital and Culture Minister Caroline Dinenage said in a statement, “The UK is determines to support our business to engage with China in a way that reflects the UK’s values and takes account of national security concerns”.

The UK government had earlier allowed Huawei a limited role in supplying equipment for the country’s 5G roll-out. However, reversing its earlier decision, the country has now ordered all its operators to get rid of all Huawei equipment from their 5G network by 2027. The UK government has also presented the National Security and Investment Bill, which allows the government to intervene in commercial transactions which could undermine national security and this includes the power to block transactions as a last resort.

Earilier this month, the US had levied sanctions on Huawei by restricting chip supply to the company which had affected the company’s smartphone shipments.

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