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Spark disappointed by GCSB decision to block Huawei partnership over security concerns

Spark is disappointed by the GCSB's decision to block the company from working with a Chinese communications company over security concerns.

It comes after the US has warned that Huawei is a security threat due to the possibility of Chinese government interference. The company has denied carrying out any intelligence work for the Chinese government.

However, the Government is confident relations with China won't be affected by the spy agency's decision to ban Spark from working with Huawei to build a new 5G network.

GCSB Minister Andrew Little does not believe the move will put any strain on New Zealand's relationship with China.

"We are two countries. We both need to make decisions in our best interests in the way we do that, but we have a strong relationship," Mr Little said.

"I'm totally confident that that will continue."

Spark corporate relations head Andrew Pirie told 1 NEWS Huawei was a good and active company to work with, adding that they were disappointed in the GCSB's decision as the company had already seen the benefits of their partnership.  

Mr Pirie said Spark has several other potential partners to explore, including Nokia, Ericsson and Samsung.

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For more on this story, watch 1 NEWS at 6pm. Source: 1 NEWS

Geng Shuang, spokesperson for China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said of the Chinese government's relationship with New Zealand following the news, "The economic and trade cooperation between China and New Zealand is mutually beneficial in nature".

"We hope New Zealand will provide a level-playing field for Chinese enterprises' operations there and do something conducive to mutual trust and cooperation."

Spark says the decision will not affect plans to launch its 5G network by 1 July 2020.


The GCSB is preventing Spark using the technology giant to help build a new 5G network. Source: Breakfast