FCC chairman opposes China Mobile bid to provide U.S. services

By David Shepardson (Reuters) - Federal Communications Commission chairman Ajit Pai said on Wednesday he opposes China Mobile Ltd's bid to provide U.S. telecommunications services and that the commission will vote on whether to deny the application in May.

Reuters April 18, 2019 00:07:19 IST
FCC chairman opposes China Mobile bid to provide U.S. services

FCC chairman opposes China Mobile bid to provide US services

By David Shepardson

(Reuters) - Federal Communications Commission chairman Ajit Pai said on Wednesday he opposes China Mobile Ltd's bid to provide U.S. telecommunications services and that the commission will vote on whether to deny the application in May.

"It is clear that China Mobile’s application to provide telecommunications services in our country raises substantial and serious national security and law enforcement risks," Pai said in a statement. China Mobile first applied for permission in 2011.

FCC officials said approval could have boosted Chinese intelligence gathering efforts.

The comments amid a broader U.S. campaign to limit the role of Chinese telecommunications firms in the build out of 5G networks comes as Western governments grapple with the national security implications of moving to 5G, which promises to be at least 100 times faster than the current 4G networks.

China Mobile had sought approval to provide services for phone calls between the United States and other countries. It did not seek approval to provide wireless services to U.S. consumers.

The Trump administration said last year China Mobile wanted to be able to "interconnect and have greater access to telephone lines, fiber-optic cables, cellular networks, and communication satellites throughout the United States’ telecommunications network."

China Mobile USA, which filed the application, is a Delaware corporation that is indirectly and ultimately owned and controlled by the Chinese government, the FCC said.

In 2011, China Mobile sought FCC approval to provide international facilities-based and resale telecommunications services between the U.S. and foreign destinations.

In July 2018, after a lengthy review of the application and consultation with the U.S. intelligence community, a group of executive branch agencies recommended the FCC deny China Mobile’s application citing "substantial national security and law enforcement risks that cannot be resolved through a voluntary mitigation agreement."

Pai has circulated a draft order that would deny the request and find that China Mobile "is vulnerable to exploitation, influence, and control by the Chinese government."

For more than a year, the White House has been considering an executive order to declare a national emergency that would bar U.S. companies from using telecommunications equipment made by Huawei and ZTE.

The FCC has also been considering for more than a year whether to require carriers to remove and replace equipment from firms deemed a national security risk. Pai said on Friday that proposal is still pending.

(Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Susan Thomas)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

also read

U.S. to double public climate finance to developing countries by 2024
World

U.S. to double public climate finance to developing countries by 2024

By Andrea Shalal WASHINGTON (Reuters) -The United States said on Thursday it would boost public climate finance to help poor countries reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to a changing climate, doubling funding by 2024 from high average levels hit during the Obama administration. The White House said it was embracing "ambitious but attainable goals" for international aid to developing countries, given the urgency of the climate crisis and to compensate for a sharp drop in U.S. funding during the Trump administration.

More risks to pregnant women, their newborns from COVID-19 than known before - study
World

More risks to pregnant women, their newborns from COVID-19 than known before - study

(Removes extraneous word 'while' in paragraph 3) (Reuters) -Pregnant women infected with COVID-19 and their newborn children face higher risks of complications than was previously known, a study by British scientists showed on Friday. An infection of the new coronavirus in such newborns is associated with a three-fold risk of severe medical complications, according to a study conducted by scientists at the University of Oxford. (https://bit.ly/3tNwkJ7) Pregnant women are at higher risk of complications such as premature birth, high blood pressure with organ failure risk, need for intensive care and possible death

Spain's left-wing leader, interior minister get death threat letters
World

Spain's left-wing leader, interior minister get death threat letters

MADRID (Reuters) -Anonymous death threat letters with bullets enclosed in the envelopes have been sent to two of Spain's top security officials and the leader of the hard-left Unidas Podemos party, officials said on Friday, adding police are investigating.