Call on President Trump to abandon his “bully tactics”, end the US-China trade war and co-operate with Beijing to secure a “win-win” solution for 5G development of the world

I call on the US President Trump to abandon his “bully tactics”, end the US-China trade war and co-operate with Beijing to secure a “win-win” solution for the 5G development of the world.

Fifty years ago in 1969, the United States won the 14-year-old space race with the Soviet Union since the first successful launch of the first Soviet Union Sputnik artificial satellite in 1955 by landing the first humans on the Moon with Apollo 11.

Today, the United States is virtually conceding defeat in the race for technological supremacy with China when US President Trump exercised the “nuclear option” and added Huawei and 68 of its non-US affiliates to a blacklist, officially called the Entity List, on May 16 restricting the Shenzen-based company’s ability to purchase hardware, software and services from its American hi-tech suppliers without approval from the US government.

This marked a tech cold war and it could slow down or dramatically alter the rollout of the 5G technology and infrastructure likely to define the future of the Internet for the next decade and intertwine factories, power plants, airports, hospitals and government agencies.

The Iron Curtain constructed by Stalin after the Second World War in 1945 was torn down after 45 years. Now Trump is trying to construct a second Iron Curtain on the Internet.

It is ironical that while the United States introduced the Internet to the world, marking its technological and telecommunication supremacy, it is again the United States which is proposing to divide the Internet – a sad mark of its decline and its journey from a telecoms leader to 5G also-ran without being a challenger to China’s Huawei.

It is reported that Huawei is around 18 months ahead of rivals in 5G rollout capacity while the United States is without a telecommunications hardware champion that can compete with major 5G players such as China’s Huawei, Finland’s Nokia and Sweden’s Ericsson.

A new Internet Cold War will be a major setback for the globalised world, and both the United States and China should accept the new global realities and find ways to co-operate with each other on 5G instead of embarking on actions inimical to global economic and technological interests.

MP FOR ISKANDAR PUTERI
Media statement by Lim Kit Siang in Gelang Patah on Saturday, 1st June 2019