Reuters | NEW DELHI | Fri Jul 9, 2010 | 2:55pm IST
India is working to sort out restrictions on Chinese telecommunications equipment imports, the country’s top telecoms official said on Friday, without providing a timeframe for a decision. Earlier this year, India had barred Indian mobile phone operators from placing orders with China’s Huawei Technologies and ZTE Corp because of security concerns, Indian telecom industry officials have said. India is concerned that Chinese equipment may have spying technology embedded to intercept sensitive conversations and government documents, highlighting government security concerns.
However, in June a government source had told Reuters that India might allow Chinese telecom equipment imports after putting in place security checks, indicating a softening of India’s position on an issue that has clouded ties between the two Asian powers. "We are working on that," P.J. Thomas, India’s telecommunications secretary told reporters on Friday. "We had discussions with organisations, associations and they have of course helped us with their own suggestions."
China’s official Xinhua news agency reported on Friday that China had urged India to treat Chinese companies fairly. "We hope India will provide a fair, open and transparent investment environment for Chinese companies," China Minister of Commerce Chen Deming was quoted as saying by Xinhua. Chen said the Indian authorities had given assurances that its new security regulations would be fair and transparent, and would not be discriminatory and unfair to Chinese companies.