Insights UK and Japan agree to strengthen efforts to diversify technology used in telecoms networks

The UK Minister for Digital Infrastructure, Julia Lopez, and Japan’s Vice-Minister of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, Yuji Sasaki, have agreed several joint initiatives to support efforts to reduce the global overreliance on a small number of suppliers to build and maintain telecoms networks.

Both nations committed to greater information sharing on their respective policy approaches, seeking to build a more competitive and diverse global market for telecoms equipment, including for 5G and future wireless networks.

Further commitments include deeper cooperation on research and development, particularly on open and interoperable network technologies such as Open RAN, which allow telecom providers to mix and match technical equipment from different suppliers within a network.

The Japanese and UK governments also agreed to share information and facilitate joint efforts between industry and academia in both countries to develop future communications technologies, such as 6G.

The UK has already announced similar partnerships with India and the US to work closer together to achieve shared ambitions on telecoms diversification. The Government says that these will support the UK’s £250 million 5G Supply Chain Diversification Strategy, which seeks to build a more competitive and diverse telecoms supply market by supporting incumbent suppliers, attracting new suppliers into the UK market and accelerating the development and deployment of open-interface solutions such as Open RAN. To read the Government’s announcement in full, click here.