New Covid Relief Package Removes Huawei, ZTE Broadband Equipment

The U.S. government passed a new US$900 Covid relief package and it provides US$1.9 billion to remove Huawei and ZTE equipment from US networks (via Axios).

Broadband Equipment

Overall the package provides to improve broadband internet access. A $3.2 billion Emergency Broadband Benefit will provide $50 per month for broadband for low-income families. Other funding includes:

  • US$1.9 billion to remove Huawei and ZTE equipment from U.S. networks.
  • US$1 billion in grants for Tribal broadband programs.
  • US$300 million for rural broadband deployment.
  • US$285 million that will in part fund a pilot program to help with broadband issues for communities around historically Black colleges and universities.
  • US$250 million for the Federal Communications Commission’s telehealth program.
  • US$65 million to improve broadband mapping.

In 2019 the United States started warning other countries not to use broadband equipment from Huawei and other Chinese companies. Vodafone had discovered backdoors in Huawei networking equipment and the U.S. said it was a national security risk to use it.

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