COMMENT: Perhaps one of the last important decisions made by the crumbling Australian Coalition government saw Chinese telco equipment giants Huawei and ZTE being banned from the country's mobile 5G network.
Huawei expressed its unhappiness with the decision immediately on social media.
"We have been informed by the Govt that Huawei & ZTE have been banned from providing 5G technology to Australia. This is a extremely disappointing result for consumers. Huawei is a world leader in 5G. Has safely & securely delivered wireless technology in Aust for close to 15 years," Huawei said via Twitter.
The announcement by acting home minister Scott Morrison comes as Australia prepares to auction off valuable radio-frequency spectrum in November, and will be a boost for Europe's Ericsson and Nokia, and United States telco vendors.
Huawei is already banned from Australia's NBN project (which was possibly a blessing in disguise given what a politicised fiasco it has become). The Australian government in June this year also acted quickly to fund an internet cable in the Solomon Islands to ensure that Huawei was kept out of the deal due to spying and cyber attacks from China worries.
ZTE meanwhile copped the ban hammer in the United States in June for security reasons and allegedly snaffling American companies' intellectual property.
Morrison said Huawei and ZTE were booted from the 5G network build as the two companies "are likely to be subject to extrajudicial directions from a foreign government that conflict with Australian law."
These could "risk failure by the carrier to adequately protect a 5G network from unauthorised access or interference."
The Australian 5G ban is probably too small to hurt either Huawei or ZTE much. Their telco customers in Australia and New Zealand could have a problem though, now that the official word from across the Tasman is that the Chinese are not to be trusted - especially if the New Zealand government follows suit.