Huawei 5G UK ban – What does this mean for your older generation & unsanctioned equipment?

Posted in on 31 July 2020

Huawei 5G ban

After a period of speculation, Huawei 5G equipment is officially banned from UK telecoms networks and must be removed by 2027.

The U-turn decision was made by UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, after intense pressure from the US stating that using Huawei’s 5G equipment is a threat to national security as it relies on non-US components. Initially, UK government decided back in January to allow Huawei to supply 35% of the UK’s 5G equipment but capped it’s market share. But now it must be removed entirely. In addition, it will be illegal in the UK to buy new Huawei 5G equipment after 31 December 2020.

Current Huawei users include the likes of BT, whose EE mobile network features Huawei within its 4G and 5G hardware. However BT has vowed that it will remove Huawei from its 5G network and replace it with Ericsson’s products in the next three years. It’s currently unclear if similar deadlines will be put in place for other Huawei equipment.

Regardless of the suspicion surrounding Huawei, the company denies all allegations of espionage. A spokesperson for the business has warned that pushing them out of UK networks will lead Britain into the digital slow lane, and could prove to be an expensive decision. Though we don’t know exactly how networks will cope after scrapping Huawei, experts have said that it is likely to delay the full fibre rollout in the UK by more than two years and could push up costs by up to £2 billion.


Is older generation Huawei kit still allowed?

Huawei has been operating in the UK for more than 20 years and played a huge role in the rollout of 2G, 3G and 4G networks. Therefore, despite the ban on 5G equipment, older generation kit (2G, 3G and 4G) can stay until they are no longer needed. The older kit is not believed to be a threat as it’s easier to monitor.

With older generation Huawei equipment here to stay for now, questions arise around the impact of availability on critical spares. From experience, we can forecast operators emergency stockpiling Huawei spares before stocks become sparce.

We recommend partnering with a reliable telecom network partner who is experienced in sourcing equipment to help you maintain your Huawei networks when supply and demand of equipment spikes. Here at TXO we stock over 800,000 parts in our global warehouses including lots of Huawei kit. In addition to our current stock we have a network of reliable partners worldwide that help us to source new and refurbished telecom network equipment with ease.


Do you have Huawei equipment affected by the ban?

We understand that operators may have already invested in Huawei 5G equipment, but this doesn’t have to be the end of its useful life. Of course, there will still be a demand for Huawei kit in other countries without a ban on the manufacturer. Therefore, we can deinstall, collect and sell your equipment to other clients where the kit is needed. Excess inventory can take up space in your warehouses and ties up cash, so we want to support you.   

As a telecom equipment reseller, we want to buy your surplus networking equipment so you can turn unneeded inventory into cash or credit via our two purchasing models: outright purchase and consignment. Whether it’s new, used, out-of-warranty, discontinued, obsolete or decommissioned – we will buy your surplus routers, switches, servers, line cards and other types of mobile and fixed line equipment and give you a fair market evaluation of its worth so that you can achieve maximum ROI.


E-waste avoidance

The Huawei ban does not mean that kit should be disposed of. Here at TXO, supporting the Circular Economy has been part of our vision since the very beginning. We believe that the decision to ban Huawei 5G equipment should not add towards the global e-waste problem. Steps should be taken to support the Circular Economy, whether this be through resale, reuse or recycling. For further information on how you can meet CSR and sustainability goals, check out our page on TXO & the circular economy.


If your network is affected by the Huawei 5G ban, we’re here to help. Contact a member of our team to discuss your next steps.