Huawei Shut Out Of Canada’s 5G Wireless Network

Huawei Technologies Inc. has been left out of Canada’s 5G network.

Two of Canada’s three largest telecommunications companies have announced that they will partner with European firms to build the country’s 5G network rather than the Chinese technology giant.

Bell Canada (TSX:BCE) announced that Sweden’s Ericsson will be its supplier of the radio access network equipment that has been Huawei's main product line in Canada since 2008. Earlier this year, Bell signed its first 5G wireless network supplier agreement with Finland’s Nokia.

Telus Corp. (TSX:T) announced that it had also selected Ericsson, as well of Nokia, as its suppliers for its 5G network. Neither Bell or Telus provided details on how much their contracts with Ericsson and Nokia are worth.

Huawei's participation in the construction of Canada's 5G network has become a major political issue between Ottawa and Washington, D.C. The U.S. government has warned that it will limit intelligence sharing with countries that have Huawei equipment in their 5G networks - citing the potential for spying by China’s government, an allegation Huawei has denied.

Ericsson is currently a supplier of 4G LTE wireless technology to Bell and the main supplier to Rogers Communications (TSX:RCI.B) , Canada’s other major telecom company. Ericsson has a sizable research and development presence in Montreal. Bell said Ericsson will also support its rollout of 5G-enhanced fixed wireless home internet service to rural areas, which generally have less access to fibre optics networks.

Besides Huawei, Ericsson and Nokia (NYSE:NOK), there are other foreign companies that want a piece of Canada’s 5G network. Samsung Electronics has announced a deal to supply equipment for Videotron's wireless network in the province of Quebec and the Ottawa region of Ontario.