China's Huawei will not be restricted in Brazil where plans are under way to launch a 5G network, the country's vice president said Monday, defying US pressure to shun the firm.
Huawei, a leader in next-generation 5G wireless technology, is barred from developing 5G networks in the United States over concerns about its ties to the government in Beijing and possible security threats.
The administration of President Donald Trump is trying to convince its allies to do the same.
But Hamilton Mourao, who is considered a moderate voice in President Jair Bolsonaro's government, told reporters Brazil's ties with its biggest trade partner China could not be "disregarded."
"There is no veto of Huawei in Brazil. Huawei has been here for 10 years," Mourao said.
An auction of 5G spectrum is expected to be held next year.
Bolsonaro railed against China during last year's election campaign, but has changed his tune since taking office in January.
Brazil has sought to distance itself from the ongoing US-China trade war in an effort to stay onside with both countries.
"We are experiencing a moment of instability, of competition between countries, a return to a certain protectionism," Mourao said.
Brazil, he added, has to adopt a position that is both "flexible and pragmatic."