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Ericsson CEO Lobbying Against Swedish Ban On Huawei, ZTE: Report
In the messages unveiled by the newspaper, Ekholm said Ericsson would leave Sweden if the authorities continue to hold the ban on Huawei and ZTE, agency reports revealed.
Borje Ekholm, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Swedish telecom giant Ericsson, has been lobbying the government to repeal a ban that prohibits Huawei and ZTE from participating in the country's 5G construction, according to local newspaper Dagens Nyheter.
In a series of text messages to Swedish Foreign Trade Minister Anna Hallberg, the CEO has urged a review of the ban by the Swedish Post and Telecommunication Administration, which requires operators to withdraw the Chinese companies from local 5G infrastructure by January 2025.
In the messages unveiled by the newspaper, Ekholm said Ericsson would leave Sweden if the authorities continue to hold the ban on Huawei and ZTE, reports Xinhua news agency.
Jacob Wallenberg, deputy chair of Ericsson's board of directors, also said "stopping Huawei is definitely not good" in an interview with the newspaper in late December last year.
However, Hallberg told Dagens Nyheter that she would not interfere in the decisions related to the ban, adding that she did not meet with Ekholm.
In November last year, the UK government said that the Chinese telecom giant Huawei will not be able to install its 5G equipments in the country from September 2021.
The UK government has laid out a roadmap for removing all telecoms equipment made by "high risk vendors," including Huawei, from the country's 5G network by 2027.
The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) also designated Chinese telecom companies, Huawei and ZTE, as national security risks to America's communications networks.
As its production and operations face significant challenges due to trade restrictions imposed by the US, Huawei is reportedly pushing for setting up of a dedicated chip plant in China which can help reduce dependence on foreign technology for running its core telecom infrastructure business.
Shanghai IC R&D Centre, a chip research company backed by the Shanghai Municipal government will run the plant, the Financial Times reported recently, citing people familiar with the matter.
The plan is to start with low-end 45nm chips and acquiring expertise for developing 20nm chips in two years so that its 5G telecoms equipment business can continue even in the face of US restrictions, said the report.