Taiwan Boycotts China-made Telecom Equipment

The National Communications Commission (NCC), Taiwan`s regulator of telecommunications, telecasting and broadcasting industries, has recently disapproved applications by some local telecom providers for importing equipment made by mainland Chinese makers Huawei Technologies Co. and ZTE Corp.

Taiwan is another economy to “boycott” China-made telecom equipment after the United States and India on national security concern. The disapproval has drawn discontent from the island`s telecom service providers who order the equipment.

The service providers include Far EasTone Telecom Co., Ltd., Taiwan Mobile Corp., Asia Pacific Telecom Co., Ltd. and Vibo Telecom Co., Ltd.

Huawei has recently won some NT$1 billion (US$31 million at US$1:NT$32) of contracts to supply Far EasTone 3.5G cell towers after securing NT$20.4 billion (US$637 million) of contracts early this year to supply Asia Pacific with evolution-data optimized equipment over a six-year period. Taiwan Mobile has placed orders with Huawei for NT$400-500 million (US$12.5-15.6 million) of Ethernet network equipment.

It is understood that NCC refused to issue import permits to these buyers on grounds of national security and incomplete import documents. Telecom service providers rebuked the excuses by saying that digitization of the equipment has eradicated the possibility of leaking national security and personal data. In addition, many European and American equipment suppliers have contracted mainland Chinese manufacturers to build the equipment for them.

(by Ken Liu)

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