Breaking its silence on reports that Chinese telecom equipment makers are being banned in India on security reasons, Beijing on Monday urged New Delhi to remove restrictions and said such curbs amount to discrimination.

“We hope the policies being introduced will treat companies from all countries, including China, equally,” Chinese commerce ministry spokesman Yao Jian told a press conference here on Monday.

The Chinese telecom firms Huawei and ZTE are under scanner as their facilities are reportedly under direct surveillance of China. These firms have been facing troubles in getting the security clearance from the security agencies as objections about their vulnerability to Chinese hackers are still alive.

At a recent meeting with ZTE officials, the home ministry had sought clarifications and additional information before giving green signal to the use of their equipment in the country.

New Delhi last December had amended the unified access service licence and stipulated that security clearance should be obtained before placing purchase orders for telecom equipments or software in view of national security concerns.

“They (India) should not discriminate against Chinese companies,” he said and urged New Delhi to allow firms on both sides to fulfil their contracts. India should “create a foreign investment policy environment that is open, fair and transparent,” Mr. Jian said.

“China provides fine services and a good investment environment for Indian businesses here and we hope India will provide a good environment for Chinese and other foreign companies as well,” he added.

This is for the first time that Beijing chose to make an official comment on the reported restrictions on its firms.

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