Huawei could be planning its first data center in Latin America.

An anonymous source within the company told Chilean daily newspaper La Tercera that Huawei’s offices in Chile are currently trying to convince the head office in Shenzhen to build a data center in the country.

Santiago Chile
Santiago, Chile – Thinkstock / komyvgory

China Checking out Chile

"At the moment we are analyzing all the regulatory, operational and infrastructure issues of this data center, which will be the first in Latin America," the source said.

They added that this work was being done with assistance from InvestChile, a government-backed investment body that lent a helping hand when Amazon was considering a Chilean data center to store the data produced by the country's numerous space observatories.

According to the source, who did not want to disclose how much the facility would cost, Huawei’s offices in Brazil and Argentina are also bidding to deploy data centers in their respective countries.

Decision on any potential expansions will be reportedly made during the second quarter of 2019.

"Despite the advantage we have as a country in terms of technological development and stability, it is difficult to compete with larger markets such as Brazil or Argentina," the source told La Tercera.

Chile is geographically closer to China than Brazil or Argentina, something that should score some points in its favor. Work on a submarine cable connecting the two countries is currently underway. Once completed, it will become the first submarine link of its kind to directly connect Asia with Latin America.

On the Chilean side, the cable will land in the City of Valparaiso. The same location has seen recent investment from Google, which is looking to connect Chile to Los Angeles.

Although this project would be Huawei’s first data center in Latin America, the Chinese infrastructure giant has previously collaborated with Spanish telecommunications provider Telefonica to provide cloud services in Chile, Brazil and Mexico.

Huawei continues to find itself in hot water over suspicions in the US that the company is implementing backdoor surveillance into its devices. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo recently warned America's allies that they if adopt Huawei's systems into their critical infrastructure, US intelligence agencies will not share information or work alongside them.