David Schenker is the Taube Senior Fellow at The Washington Institute and director of the Program on Arab Politics. He is the former Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs.
Articles & Testimony
Amman will necessarily continue seeking Chinese direct investment for various purposes, but its rejection of Huawei echoes U.S. concerns about Beijing’s involvement in sensitive sectors.
Last week, the Jordanian telecom company Zain signed a contract with Nokia to deploy 5G networks in the kingdom. Umniah, another local cellular phone service provider, picked Ericsson. Jordan’s third mobile internet operator, Orange, has yet to reveal its 5G choice for several markets but also seems inclined to select a Swedish or Finnish multinational. The snubbing of Chinese telecommunications behemoth Huawei will disappoint Beijing. Not only is Jordan a participant in China’s Belt and Road Initiative and increasingly a destination of Chinese foreign direct investment, but Huawei also provided the backbone for Jordan’s 2G, 3G and 4G networks...