The U.S. Is Warning the World Off Huawei. This Tiny Town Is Unfazed

Bloomberg
Hotel at Lac La Hache James Alexander Michie

A hotel pub sits beside the frozen lake at Lac La Hache. Photographer: Josh McCulloch/Alamy

Lac La Hache is a recreational and retirement community in the Cariboo region of British Columbia, Canada. Lac La Hache, or “The Lake of the Axe” as it translates to, was named, during the fur trade era, after the unfortunate incident of a French-Canadian voyageur who lost his axe head while chopping a hole in the ice. It is a town rich in history, as it sits along the Gold Rush Trail.

It is already well known that Canada has struggled to bring modern communication services through its extensive geography. Being that more than 80 percent of the population lives in urban areas with the usual technological characteristics. While on the other hand, at least some 6.3 million Canadians are scattered in areas almost as extensive as Europe and extend to the north of the Arctic Circle. Although connectivity is available, it is not very good. In fact, it is slow and irregular. Canadians pay some of the highest rates among the developed economies for wireless services

Huawei proposal

China’s largest technology company on Friday announced a pilot project to bring high-speed Internet to a Canadian village, Lac La Hache. The trial, financed by Huawei that will be carried out with ABC Communications, based in Quesnel, British Columbia. In the proposal, it promises to deliver speeds of up to 100 megabits per second. That’s at least double or, in some cases, quadruple what the residents of the city of 860 people get now.

The project makes it clear that Huawei continues to address a huge need in remote areas around the world, even as it struggles against the international furor over its team’s security. Even so, it has been said that it takes a particularly strange turn in a Canadian saga. Being that Meng Wanzhou, financial director of Huawei and daughter of the company’s billionaire founder, Ren Zhengfei, lives less than 300 miles south of Lac La Hache on bail at his home in Vancouver.

It should be noted that the United States, Australia, and New Zealand are blocking Huawei from their 5G networks. These nations have taken such action because they have some fear regarding the Huawei equipment. Which they believe could be used by the Chinese government for espionage. However, other nations such as Canada are considering joining.

Despite how beneficial this project could be, we must not forget that the community is composed mainly of retirees. In fact, many of them sold their houses in Vancouver’s face in recent years to retire to a quiet life.

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Source: Natalie Obiko Pearson and Josh Wingrove | Bloomberg

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