June 25, 2020

WASHINGTON – Today, ITI urged the White House to continue to support innovation and investment in 5G and related technologies and work with technology industry partners to secure 5G implementation. In comments submitted to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), ITI noted that the U.S. government needs to encourage investment in foundational and new technologies; take a risk-based approach to 5G security; continue to lead in global conversations on 5G; support U.S. industry involvement in standards bodies; and work with industry partners to develop and execute the Implementation Plan. Last week, ITI released 5G Policy Principles for Global Policymakers, a guide to help governments maximize opportunities and address challenges related to the deployment of 5G technology.

“The U.S. government should take steps to enable an environment that supports innovation and encourages investment in the foundational and new technologies that will facilitate 5G networks,” ITI wrote. “[Also], we encourage the U.S. government to maintain consistent engagement with industry on all aspects of the Implementation Plan. It is imperative that the U.S. government collaborate with industry, as secure 5G deployment will only succeed with sustained effort from all stakeholders.”

Critical recommendations ITI highlighted for policymakers’ consideration include:

  • Enabling an environment that supports innovation and encourages investment in the foundational and new technologies that will facilitate 5G networks. This should include prioritizing freeing up additional spectrum, promoting internationally harmonized spectrum bands as appropriate, using targeted government/public funding to complement private sector investment to accelerate the rollout of 5G infrastructure, investing in workforce training, and further streamlining siting requirements.
  • Taking a risk-based approach to 5G security, including focusing on threats to the 5G ecosystem beyond those associated with supply chain. Taking a risk-based approach to 5G security, while also making sure to consider the full range of 5G security risks beyond those associated with equipment and suppliers, is essential.
  • Continuing efforts to lead in global conversations happening on 5G. While this can take many forms, it should focus on continuing multilateral and bilateral engagements, creating the multilateral fund set forth in several pieces of legislation, considering carving out a national security exception for telecommunications networks in Development Finance Corporation (DFC) funding, reconsidering the content rules that currently govern Export Import Bank transactions, and continuing and expanding funding for 5G- and cybersecurity-related business development trade missions, reverse trade missions, and other events.
  • Seeking to support increased U.S. industry participation in standards bodies working on 5G specifications. This should include supporting industry-led bodies with transparent, rules-based processes, making the U.S. a more attractive meeting location for SDOs to host meetings, ensuring that current and future policies and regulations do not unintentionally inhibit U.S. company participation in international standards bodies, reexamining NISTIR 8074 to see whether and how recommendations are applicable to 5G work, and regularly communicating with U.S. industry.
  • Working closely with industry partners on all facets of the Implementation Plan. It is imperative that the U.S. government continue to collaborate with industry, as secure 5G deployment will only succeed with sustained effort from all stakeholders.

As the premier technology trade association with a presence across the globe, ITI represents the full spectrum of technology companies, including those contributing to nearly every facet of 5G, from manufacturing the components and equipment that will power 5G networks to developing the applications and services that will run on top of 5G networks. Read ITI’s full submission here.