US Warns Brazil About Huawei and 5G

By Reuters
March 19, 2019 Updated: March 19, 2019

WASHINGTON—U.S. officials have warned their Brazilian counterparts of their security concerns about Chinese telecom equipment maker Huawei Technologies Co during talks in Washington, a senior American official said on March 18.

The United States has said Huawei technology in next-generation 5G networks could be used to spy on the West. China has rejected the accusations.

The 5G issue is one of many security, defense and trade matters on the agenda as President Donald Trump and Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro are slated to meet for the first time on Tuesday.

“They (Brazilian officials) have had a whole host of different meetings here where they’ve heard from our experts on security, intelligence matters, and otherwise in order to understand the consequences of these networks and how frankly dangerous and how they could undermine their security domestically,” the U.S. official told reporters on a conference call, speaking on condition of anonymity.

A Brazilian official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Brazil did not want to get in between the United States and China on the Huawei dispute. The official said that at the moment, no barriers were foreseen for Huawei in Brazil.

Bolsonaro, who embraced closer ties with the United States during his campaign for office last year, visited the CIA on Monday.

Brazil is also working during the trip to win U.S. backing for economic reforms to win its support to join the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

The U.S. official told reporters that Brazil’s efforts on economic and regulatory reform were welcome.

“We see those efforts and that positive movement in a favorable light and clearly we want to help Brazil achieve its goals and will do everything we can in order to help them achieve their goal,” the official said.

By Roberta Rampton & Lisandra Paraguassu