India and China are not in good terms at the moment. Things between both countries are heated up because of the border tensions. ZTE and Huawei are two Chinese companies which have been helping telcos in providing telecom services in India for a long time now. But both of these companies will be left out of 5G trials which will take place in India. This decision was taken by the Indian government which cited the reason as national security. It is not like 5G trials for India are happening anytime soon, but the decision has been made to leave out the Chinese firms ZTE and Huawei.
Reliance Jio Can Fill Up the Void of ZTE and Huawei
Back in July, during the 43rd AGM of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL), Mukesh Ambani announced that Jio has come up with its homegrown 5G solutions. This eliminates the need for any other foreign company for Jio to test 5G. Along with that, the Indian tycoon also said that Jio will be helping other companies test 5G. This will further reduce the dependence of Indian companies on Chinese firms such as ZTE and Huawei. The only thing that Reliance Jio is waiting for is the government to allot the 5G spectrum.
As per an ET Telecom report, the decision by India to not allow ZTE and Huawei for 5G trials in India will be announced officially by the Prime Minister’s Office very soon. Countries such as the US, the UK, and Australia have raised concerns about data security against both ZTE and Huawei. This decision by the Indian government will certainly sit well with all of these countries.
But this decision is also going to raise a number of challenges for the Indian market. Most of the Indian telecom industry is still struggling to make 4G profitable when it is relying heavily on Chinese equipment. Now this decision can result in higher costs for the telcos to set up new 5G networks. At the same time, India’s equipment market is not that big and the country is already battling regulatory and infrastructure problems, so a lot of challenges are going to come up with this decision.