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Singapore Telecommunications (Singtel) and the StarHub-M1 consortium announced they have chosen Swedish Ericsson and Finnish Nokia, respectively, as 5G network partners. This development translates Chinese Huawei will take a smaller role in the wealthiest and most technologically advanced country in Southeast Asia.

While Huawei continues to look for opportunities in Southeast Asia, particularly in Singapore, the sovereign island nation’s choice for European manufacturers would likely affect the Chinese tech giant’s influence in the region.

Singtel is both the largest and influential telecommunications operator in Southeast Asia. The company’s decision could matter as a significant shareholder and could achieve economies of scale in purchasing.

Likewise, Vietnam opted for non-Chinese manufacturers as its telecommunications company, Viettel, collaborated with Nokia for its 5G equipment.

Thailand’s local telecommunication company True Corporation also selected Ericsson as the supplier of a radio access system under its national 5G network, while the country’s leading telco AIS partnered with Huawei for its nationwide 5G network infrastructure.

In South Asia, India also plans to bar Chinese manufacturers from its 5G trials after last month’s border dispute with China, according to local reports. India had also banned Chinese apps like TikTok and WeChat.


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