China's Huawei Technologies said it was open to the idea of selling cutting-edge 5G chips to Apple  (AAPL - Get Report) , according to a report from CNBC.

Huawei, which is the world's largest manufacturer of networking gadgets, is a leader in 5G or so-called fifth generation smartphone technology.

"We are open to Apple in this regard," said Huawei founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei, in an interview with CNBC. 

An agreement with Apple would mark a major change in strategy as in the past Huawei has used its chips solely in its own-brand smartphones, according to CNBC. The news also likely would be seen as a challenge to chipmakers Intel (INTL - Get Report) and Qualcomm (QCOM - Get Report) .

Apple, the iPhone giant, has yet to release a 5G phone.

The U.S. has called Huawei a national security risk because it could help the Chinese government carry out espionage, CNBC noted. Huawei has denied those allegations.

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Constable owns none of the securities listed in this story.