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US warns Jamaica against Chinese 5G

The United States has fired a shot across the bow of the Jamaican government in relation to the installation of fifth generation (5G) mobile technology infrastructure, saying that any decision to engage China, or a Chinese firm, poses several risks to the island, particularly to the financial sector.

America’s top diplomat in Jamaica, Ambassador Donald Tapia, made Washington’s position known in an exclusive interview with the Sunday Observer last Friday following an article published by the newspaper last Sunday which reported that Spectrum Management Authority (SMA) said that Jamaica is far advanced in preparing the regulatory and monitoring regime for the proliferation of 5G services.

While advancing his preference that Jamaica go with other models of 5G architecture, Tapia made the point that the island’s financial sector would be hit hard if the government engages 5G technology from a Chinese source.

Making it clear that his problem with China rests with the totalitarian nature of its government, Tapia said his country has national security concerns with 5G technology developed by Chinese companies such as Huawei and ZTE.

Declaring that these companies have been found wanting on data security issues, Ambassador Tapia produced US State Department information outlining myths and facts about 5G security and Huawei.

Included in the information is a declaration that no American company currently offers 5G end-to-end network solutions.

 “Security concerns expressed by the United States are truly about ensuring our shared security,” the US State Department has said.

It adds that alternative suppliers of end-to-end solutions are headquartered in democracies that offer rule of law and judicial protections to prevent government overreach. The document lists those suppliers as Ericsson in Sweden, Nokia in Finland, and Samsung in South Korea.


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