Canada plans to ban the use of China's Huawei Technologies and ZTE Corp 5G gear to protect national security, joining the rest of the so-called Five Eyes intelligence-sharing network.
"We intend to exclude Huawei and ZTE from our 5G networks," Industry Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne told reporters in Ottawa on Thursday.
"Providers who already have this equipment installed will be required to cease its use and remove it under the plans we're announcing today."
Champagne added that companies will be required to remove their 5G gear by June 2024, and would not be reimbursed. Companies using their 4G equipment must be removed by the end of 2027.
The decision - widely expected - had been delayed amid diplomatic tensions with China.
The rest of the Five Eyes network - which consists of Canada, the US, Britain, Australia and New Zealand - has already banned the equipment.
In September 2018, Canada first announced it would review the possible threats to national security in adopting Huawei equipment.
Then in December of the same year, Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou was arrested in Canada on a US warrant, creating a long-running dispute with China that finally ended last September with Meng's release.
After Meng's arrest, two Canadians were arrested by Beijing and accused of espionage. The two men were released the same day as Meng.
China expressed opposition to the Huawei decision.
"We will take all necessary measures to safeguard the legitimate interests of Chinese firms," foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin told reporters in Beijing on Friday.
A spokesperson for China's embassy in Canada said the alleged security concerns were a "pretext for political manipulation" and accused Canada of working with the United States to suppress Chinese companies.
Australian Associated Press
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