Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei has signed on to develop next-generation 5G wireless networks for Russia after being effectively banned from doing business in the U.S.
The heads of Huawei, the world’s largest manufacturer of telecommunications equipment, and MTS, Russia’s largest telecom provider, inked the deal on the sidelines of a meeting held at the Kremlin in Moscow between Chinese leader Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Considered a security threat in the U.S., Huawei’s future has come into question since the Trump administration announced measures last month that already resulted in several major U.S. tech companies cutting ties with the firm, including Google, Intel, Microsoft and others.
Despite urging from the U.S. to follow suit, Chinese state-media reported this week that Huawei has already secured 5G contracts in 30 countries, making Russia the latest addition to a growing list of nations where the company plans to develop the fifth and next generation of ultrafast wireless networks.
The Russian deal will see “the development of 5G technologies and the pilot launch of fifth generation networks in 2019-2020,” MTS said in a statement.Alexei Kornya, the company’s president, said the agreement will not only create “the commercial use of 5G networks in Russia in the very near future, but also contribute to the further development of economic ties between Russia and China,” Russian state-media reported.