News Brief

Chinese Telecom Gear Makers Huawei, ZTE Likely To Be Kept Out Of BSNL's Fresh 4G Equipment Tender

Swarajya Staff

Apr 03, 2021, 02:56 PM | Updated 02:57 PM IST

BSNL (image via @JKAlerts/Facebook)
BSNL (image via @JKAlerts/Facebook)

Chinese telecom gear maker Huawei and ZTE are likely to be kept out of the state-owned telecom PSU Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited's (BSNL) fresh tender for procuring 4G equipment.

The exclusion of both the firms will be the first official step by the government to bar Chinese vendors from India's telecom networks.

BSNL proposal for issuing fresh equipment tender for 57,000 4G sites have received the approval of the the Empowered Technology Group (ETG) of the Centre.

The tender would allow multinational vendors such as Finland’s Nokia, Sweden’s Ericsson and South Korea’s Samsung but not Huawei and ZTE, a top government official was quoted by the Economic Times as saying.

According to the report, the ETG has barred companies from India’s bordering nations to participate in the BSNL's 4G equipment tender, thereby leaving Huawei and ZTE out of it.

The move is in line with the government’s restrictive policy towards China ever since the border standoff started between the two nations.

Meanwhile, the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has also directed private telecom companies to procure network gear only from ‘trusted source’ from 15 June onward.

Meanwhile, BSNL is also likely to allow any Indian company to take part in the forthcoming tender provided that the firm successfully shows the required proof-of-concept (POC). The impending greenfield 4G tender will also have compatibility with 5G as a necessary condition too.

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