Brazil joined a US-led proposal for building transparent and reliable 5G networks, representing another blow to Chinese vendor Huawei which is regarded as the main target of the scheme.

The alliance was unveiled by US Under Secretary for Economic Growth, Energy and the Environment Keith Krach, during a visit in the South American nation.

He noted the tie-up was part of a broader partnership between Japan, the US and Brazil aimed at ensuring “a secure, trusted, and vibrant communication network ecosystem” and developing a common approach “to the deployment of transparent and secure 5G networks based on the foundation of free and fair competition, transparency, and the rule of law”, in line with their national laws, policy priorities and international obligations.

“Together the three of us, Japan, US and Brazil all expressed commitment to secure, resilient and trusted 5G networks”, in addition to support for 5G security proposals outlined in Prague in May 2019, and “internationally accepted digital trust standards which form the basis of the EU 5G Clean Toolbox and the Clean Network”.

He added 31 of 37 OECD countries already joined the pact, which now counts a total 49 nations.

Reuters reported Brazilian operators had been offered financial support by US authorities to opt for kit from Western vendors including Nokia and Ericsson, but they were not willing to reduce their choices and were already testing Huawei equipment before a 5G auction in the country, expected in 2021.

At the end of October, four countries in Europe signed agreements with the US in support of the Clean Network initiative.