UK and Japan forge closer links on telecoms

The UK and Japan will increase their collaborative efforts to diversify telecoms networks’ technology. Both nations agreed to closer cooperation to solve global telecoms supply chain issues including:

  • A commitment to more information sharing on innovative network construction techniques 
  • Supporting R&D collaboration on future tech such as Open RAN and 6G

UK’s Minister for Digital Infrastructure, Julia Lopez and Japan’s Vice-Minister of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications Yuji Sasaki met on Friday and agreed to several joint initiatives to reduce the global overreliance on a small number of telecoms networks’ suppliers. Both nations committed to greater information sharing of policy approaches to facilitate diversity and competition in the global telecoms equipment market for 5G and future wireless networks. There will also be deeper cooperation on research and development in the open and interoperable network technologies like Open RAN which allows telecom operators to mix equipment from different suppliers within a network. This partnership is similar to UK partnerships already announced with India and the US. These arrangements will support the UK’s £250 million 5G Supply Chain Diversification Strategy which is intent on building a more competitive and diverse telecoms supply market.