China’s Huawei and ZTE have been banned from providing 5G technology equipment to Australia.


A spokesperson for Australia’s Department of Communications and the Arts, which overseas telecoms regulations, did not say Huawei and ZTE had been banned specifically, but pointed CNBC toward a statement released Thursday regarding security guidance for Australian mobile carriers.

“The government considers that the involvement of vendors who are likely to be subject to extrajudicial directions from a foreign government that conflict with Australian law, may risk failure by the carrier to adequately protect a 5G network from unauthorized access or interference,” part of the statement said, highlighting that the government feels both Chinese firms could post national security threats.

Huawei and ZTE were not immediately available for comment.

5G next generation mobile internet technology is touted as being the backbone of future cities and even driverless cars. Many countries, including China and the U.S., are laying the groundwork to roll this technology out in the next few years. But it is also highly politicized with China and the U.S. battling it out to become a leader in the technology.

In the U.S., Huawei and ZTE are restricted from selling telecoms equipment because of national security concerns.