Huawei Reportedly Signs South Korean Network Upgrade Contract
Published on: 2nd Mar 2014
Huawei has secured a tentative agreement to supply network equipment to South Korea's SK Telecom according to local media reports. The issue is potentially controversial due to recent pressure from US officials on the South Korean counterparts to avoid using Huawei supplied telecoms equipment.
The latest news of a deal between SK Telecom and Huawei came a few months after senior executive Choi Jin-sung told reporters that the carrier may use the latter's equipment if needed but this would depend on the market situation.
"SK Telecom has signed a non-binding agreement with the Chinese company to use Huawei wireless connections equipment in its advanced LTE network," an unnamed source told the Korea Times, adding that "SK is closely monitoring the development of the LG Uplus-Huawei deal. Depending on the situation, the company will sign an official deal to use Huawei gear,"
The LG U+ deal with Huawei is the one coming under intense scrutiny from officials worried that government communications carried over the LG U+ network could be subject to Chinese hacking.
The USA has around 28,500 military personnel in the country as part of a long-standing agreement to support the South Korean government in a possible future conflict with its Northern counterpart.
While the USA is worried about Huawei equipment being used for spying, it was recently noted here that Huawei's own routers had been hacked into, by US spies.
However, SK Telecom denied that a deal had been signed, but did confirm that they use Huawei equipment for non-core parts. Their main network suppliers are Samsung Electronics, Ericsson and NSN.
On the web: Korea Times