A Chinese telecoms expert expressed confidence operators will meet a goal of deploying 1 million 5G base stations by the year-end because their largest supplier, Huawei, holds sufficient inventory to avoid immediate disruption from recent US moves to restrict its access to key components, China Daily reported.
Zhang Yunyong, a member of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, told the newspaper: “Despite the recent curbs on Huawei, Chinese telecoms carriers can accomplish the target of having about 1 million 5G base stations by the end of this year.” The expert, who also heads China’s Unicom’s research institute, noted all the infrastructure deployed in 2020 would be compatible with standalone specifications.
The US Department of Commerce last week cracked-down on Huawei’s access to components featuring domestic software and technology made overseas.
This week, Huawei rotating chairman Guo Ping said it was evaluating the latest US move and was confident about swiftly finding a solution.
A source told the newspaper Huawei had stockpiled some components, which should ensure it can meet the requirements to supply equipment to the operators.
Fang Jing, an analyst at Cinda Securities in Beijing, said Huawei likely has more than a six-month supply of core components, China Daily wrote.
The country’s three major mobile operators recently selected vendors for the second phase of their 5G rollouts, awarding tenders valued at nearly $10 billion.
Huawei reportedly received more than a 50 per cent share of both tenders.
China Mobile ended April with 43.7 million 5G subscribers, with 124,000 base stations deployed.