Swedish Court Rejects Huawei Appeal Over 5G Ban

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Appeal by Huawei against Swedish regulator’s decision to exclude it from 5G networks dismissed, with 5G auction slated to begin next week

Huawei’s European ambitions took another hit this week when a Swedish court dismissed an appeal by the Chinese firm against its exclusion from the country’s 5G network roll out.

According to Reuters, this dismissal will now pave the for the 5G spectrum auction scheduled for next week to proceed as planned.

The Swedish Post and Telecom Authority (PTS) in October 2020 had imposed licence conditions for local operators looking to take part in its upcoming 5G spectrum auctions, ruling that any auction bidders must remove Huawei and ZTE gear from existing central functions by January 2025 at the latest.

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Court battles

That Swedish decision came after assessments by the Swedish Armed Forces and security service, which called China “one of the biggest threats against Sweden.”

China responded when it issued a thinly veiled trade threat against Sweden.

In November Huawei won a court appeal against the ruling, but the PTS regulator said it would appeal against that ruling.

In December, the Administrative Court of Appeal backed PTS’s appeal, that allowed PTS to resume 5G spectrum auctions without removing an earlier ban on Huawei..

However that court also said Huawei could pursue a legal challenge over its exclusion.

Huawei appeals

Huawei sought to appeal that December ruling.

“A ruling by the Administrative Court of Appeal in a case relating to the law on electronic communication is final and therefore cannot be appealed,” the Supreme Administrative Court was quoted by Reuters as saying in a statement dated 14 January.

“The appeal should thus be dismissed.”

Huawei meanwhile reportedly said it was still waiting for decisions on two other appeals it made in November in relation to PTS’s ban.

“Huawei’s hope was that the (Supreme) court would take a broader approach to the issue of law and consider the appeal on other grounds, something we put forward in our appeal,” a Huawei spokesman said in response to Friday’s court statement.

According to PTS, it will press ahead with the 5G auction on Tuesday 19 January.

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Author: Tom Jowitt
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