FCC chair plans to reject China Mobile application for U.S. licence

FCC chair plans to reject China Mobile application for U.S. licence

Pai said he opposed China Mobile's entry into the USA market because the Chinese company posed a risk to national security interests.

The United States has intensified a campaign in recent years targeting Chinese telecommunications companies.

In the statement, the FCC said that China Mobile is "indirectly and ultimately owned and controlled" by China's government. It did not seek to provide wireless internet services to U.S. customers.

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) chairman, Ajit Pai, made a statement, Wednesday, announcing his opposition to China Mobile's bid to provide telecommunications services in the US. Agency officials explained that they are taking action based on a recommendation from the Trump administration that China Mobile poses "substantial national security and law enforcement risks".

The FCC release noted that on July 2, 2018, after discussions with the intelligence community, the Executive Branch agencies recommended to deny China Mobile's application. Therefore, I do not believe that approving it would be in the public interest.

Safeguarding our communications networks is critical to our national security.

China Mobile - the world's largest mobile operator with almost 930 million customers as of February - first filed an application for permission to operate in the United States in 2011. The national security and law enforcement risks were pointed as unable to be resolved through a voluntary mitigation agreement.

The Chinese operator requested the licence back in 2011, and the FCC asked the NTIA, which coordinates telecom policy for the USA government, to assess whether the licence was in the U.S. public interest.

The FCC is planning to vote on a proposal that would prevent China Mobile from building telecom facilities in the US. The long review process could be all for nothing though as the FCC will vote on it at its next open meeting on May 9.

China Mobile was looking to build interconnection facilities in the U.S., not necessarily a full-blown wireless network. That said, worldwide carrier exchanges have to integrate somehow for the world to communicate.

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