Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Myanmar backs 'strategic partner' Huawei despite US ban

May 25. 2019
Liman Zhang, chief executive of Huawei Myanmar, delivers a speech at the Myanmar Indoor Coverage Digitalisation Summit 2019 held in Yangon on May 24 (Photo courtesy of Huawei Myanmar)
Liman Zhang, chief executive of Huawei Myanmar, delivers a speech at the Myanmar Indoor Coverage Digitalisation Summit 2019 held in Yangon on May 24 (Photo courtesy of Huawei Myanmar)
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By Khine Kyaw
The Nation, Yangon

6,029 Viewed

Amid the ongoing trade war between the United States and China that recently intensified with Washington’s ban on Huawei Technologies, Myanmar has publicly announced its stance on the issue at the event entitled, “Myanmar Indoor Coverage Digitalisation Summit 2019” on Friday.

Soe Naing, deputy director general of the Posts and Telecommunications Department, said Myanmar considers the Chinese technology giant a “strategic partner”. 

He lauded Huawei for its important contribution to the development of Myanmar’s communications industry with its reliable communications solutions and professional services.

“We welcome Huawei to continue to participate in Myanmar’s future communications network construction,” he said.

“As long as equipment suppliers follow the existing laws, rules and regulations of Myanmar, we will not prohibit any of them from fairly participating in the [market] competition.”

Soe Naing stressed that Myanmar is trying to formulate laws relating to cyber security and technical standards to ensure the nation’s network security. 

Huawei has been accused by the US government of engaging in activities that are contrary to US national security or foreign policy interest, which the firm has repeatedly denied.

Win Tint, permanent secretary of the Ministry of Construction, said Myanmar aims to provide a fair environment for all parties to reduce communication costs and improve efficiency.

“The development of smart buildings and the economy in Myanmar requires a process in which it is inseparable from all-inclusive efforts. So, we will let everyone participate in our long journey,” he said.

“We hope that all parties can provide their own ideas based on the overall development and give full play to their respective energy. We will ensure everyone works together to build a better Myanmar.”

Aung Myint, president of the Federation of Myanmar Engineering Societies (Fed.MES), said Myanmar is keen on working together with all parties to improve the people’s daily lifestyle and bring digital to every citizen.

“We need technical support in real estate, telecom and other related sectors for digitalisation of indoor coverage and to encourage all relevant parties to work on a single standard,” he said.

“We hope to cooperate with all parties to promote the establishment of standards, and Huawei is one of them. We will also transfer these capabilities to registered engineers of our society. They will implement these standards later on.”

Liman Zhang, chief executive of Huawei Myanmar, said the firm’s cooperation with the government, telecommunications operators and stakeholders continues to grow further, despite the US ban.

“We always negotiate with them to ensure win-win solutions for both sides. We could solve many issues by this way,” he said.

Zhang said the firm would sign a memorandum of understanding with the Fed. MES in the near future to achieve a better, systematic cooperation in the construction industry, based on the requirements of Myanmar’s ICT infrastructure. The partnership will strengthen more collaboration for indoor coverage digitalisation in Myanmar, he said.

At the half-day event, he pledged to transparently cooperate with government agencies, consumers and business partners.

“Huawei has been continuously attacked by the Americans with unfair accusations and legal actions since last year. Notwithstanding, our customers especially from Myanmar not only still believe in Huawei but also support our telecommunication processes,” he said.

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