No Nationalised 5G Networks, Says President Trump

President Donald Trump has clearly signalled that private companies are the best way for the United States to deploy 5G networks.

The White House had reportedly been considered the idea of nationalising the 5G network for more than a year.

Connectivity is a hot topic in the US at the moment. Earlier this week Microsoft had pointed out that the official maps about broadband coverage across America used by the communication regulator, the Federal Communication Commission (FCC), were effectively wildly inaccurate.

Private, Not State

President Trump on Friday said that the United States should not nationalize its 5G network and that private companies should move quickly to deploy the faster next-generation network, Reuters reported.

“In the United States our approach is private-sector driven and private-sector led. The government doesn’t have to spend lots of money,” Trump is quoted as saying. “Leading through the government, it won’t be nearly as good, nearly as fast.”

The idea of nationalizing the 5G network had been mooted within government circles. Indeed, in March Politico apparently reported that Trump’s reelection campaign supported a government role in managing the 5G networks.

Trump made the comments alongside FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, who on Friday had revealed that the regulator would hold its third 5G spectrum auction on 10 December.

Pai said Trump’s comments opposing nationalization was an “important signal” to the private sector that is investing tens of billions of dollars in the 5G networks.

Pai is also proposed to invest $20.4 billion over 10 years to build out high-speed broadband networks in rural America.

No Chinese kit

The arrival of 5G networks around the world comes amid huge pressure from the United States on its allies not to utilise any 5G equipment from the likes of Huawei.

Huawei for its part has always maintained it poses no security threat, and in recent months has begun fighting back in public against US allegations, which it calls baseless.

It has sued the US government for a ban instituted last year that prevents US government agencies from using Huawei gear or working with contractors who do so.

Huawei has also called for a worldwide cybersecurity standards agreement.

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Tom Jowitt

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelancer and long standing contributor to Silicon UK. He is also a bit of a Lord of the Rings nut...

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