TOKYO – Japan is moving ahead with changes to its procurement guidelines that could restrict government use of Chinese telecommunications-equipment companies Huawei Technologies Co. and ZTE Corp., following American accusations that the firms engage in cyberspying.
On Friday, government officials said a meeting was planned for as soon as Monday at which they would discuss possible ways to lower the risk of infiltration of government agencies via imported equipment. The changes under discussion wouldn’t name individual companies, they said.
The Yomiuri daily newspaper earlier reported that Japan has effectively decided to ban Huawei and ZTE equipment from being used in government contracts.
American officials have launched a global campaign to persuade allies to shun Huawei. The US has briefed government officials and telecommunications executives in countries including Germany, Italy and Japan, about what they see as cybersecurity risks, The Wall Street Journal reported in November. Also of concern: Japan is host to a number of US military bases.
Huawei has repeatedly said its equipment is safe. It says it is owned by its employees and operates independently from the central government in Beijing.