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Czechs exclude Huawei from tender amid security concerns

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AFP Prague
The Czech Republic's tax directorate has excluded Chinese telecoms giant Huawei from a tender worth over 20 million euros (USD 22 million), Czech media said Wednesday.
The broadsheet DNES daily said other government institutions were following suit after the country's cyber-security agency warned that Huawei software and hardware posed a threat to state security.
Huawei is facing trouble worldwide, the latest blow being two indictments announced by the US Justice Department on charges of stealing trade secrets, fraud, obstruction of justice and of a top executive accused of violating US sanctions on Iran.
It is also facing trouble in Australia, Britain, New Zealand, Poland and elsewhere, while Germany has advocated caution saying evidence was needed first.
Huawei was the odds-on favourite of a Czech tender to build a tax portal containing sensitive personal data.
The tax directorate tweaked the conditions of the tender following the warning by the Czech National Cyber and Information Security Agency, which also named China's ZTE as a threat.
"China's laws, among other things, require private companies in China to cooperate with intelligence services, therefore allowing them into key state systems might present a threat," it said in December.
The warning came on the heels of a Czech intelligence report that warned Chinese diplomats have been engaged in increased espionage in the EU and NATO member state of 10.6 million people.
The tax directorate's spokesman, Petr Haban, told the daily that the warning was binding for his office, "so we must act accordingly.

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First Published: Jan 30 2019 | 8:40 PM IST

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