Germany plans to ban Huawei and ZTE from its 5G networks

The Huawei logo on a building in Copenhagen, Denmark (REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay) (WOLFGANG RATTAY/)

The German government plans to ban telecommunications operators from using certain components from Chinese companies Huawei and ZTE in their networks 5G, according to what the newspaper published on Monday Zeit Online.

The ban could include components already built into networks, forcing operators to remove and replace them, he wrote. Zeit Online citing government sources.

The Government, which is currently in the midst of a rbroader assessment of your relationship with your main trading partnerChina, did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the news agency Reuters.

File image of the ZTE logo (REUTERS/Tingshu Wang)
Archive image of the ZTE logo (REUTERS/Tingshu Wang) (Tingshu Wang/)

Critics of Huawei and ZTE claim that their close ties to Chinese security services they imply that their incorporation into the ubiquitous mobile networks of the future could give Chinese spies and even saboteurs access to swaths of essential infrastructure.

Huawei, ZTE and the Chinese government reject these claims, saying they are motivated by a protectionist desire to support non-Chinese rivals. They did not immediately respond to a request for comment on a possible ban.

Germany approved in 2021 an information security law that places great obstacles to the manufacturers of telecommunications equipment for new generation networks, but it does not go so far as to ban Huawei and ZTE as other countries have done.

A new report shows that Germany has become even more dependent on Huawei for its 5G radio access network (RAN) equipment than its 4G network, despite operators having avoided using signature technology for core networks.

A phone with the Huawei logo (REUTERS/Dado Ruvic)
A phone with the Huawei logo (REUTERS/Dado Ruvic) (DADO RUVIC/)

According to Zeit Onlinethe government cybersecurity agency and the Ministry of the Interior had spent months checking whether there were components in the growing 5G networks that could jeopardize German security.

The study had not been officially concluded, but the result was already clear, according to the newspaper, which cited government sources. The Government would prohibit operators from using certain Huawei and ZTE control elements in 5G networks.

The episode adds to security concerns fueling a battle over who will build 5G networks, which promise to bring faster internet connectivity to billions of people around the world. Shenzhen-based Huawei dominates the more than $90 billion global telecom equipment market, where it competes with Sweden’s Ericsson AB and Finland’s Nokia Oyj. But the US, Australia, Sweden and the UK have banned Huawei from their 5G networks, and some 60 countries have joined a US State Department program pledging to avoid the equipment. Chinese for their telecommunications systems. These efforts, which have also included US sanctions against the Chinese company, have slowed Huawei’s growth and increased tensions with China.

In 2018, the then US president, Donald Trump, started a trade war with China that later expanded to fields such as technology or diplomacy, with some voices in the North American country calling for reducing trade ties with Beijing.

(With information from Reuters, Bloomberg and EFE)

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