New problems for Huawei – Germany is considering the expulsion of Chinese 5G equipment
September 21, 2023

New problems for Huawei – Germany is considering the expulsion of Chinese 5G equipment

Germany's Federal Ministry of the Interior and Community wants to impose restrictions on Chinese 5G equipment used by local operators such as Deutsche Telekom and Vodafone, officials say. It is estimated that as many as 60 percent of Germany's 5G radio access networks (RAN) use Huawei components, which could soon become a thing of the past. What is still not clear is whether Germany plans to completely phase out Chinese 5G equipment or just a part of it.

The restriction would apply to German operators using both Huawei and ZTE equipment, which then raised concerns about possible disruption and possible legal action.

Under the draft law under consideration, German telecoms would have to limit the use of Chinese 5G equipment in the core of their networks by October 1, 2026, but the exact details of the ban are still not specified. Deutsche Telekom called that deadline unrealistic, while Telefonica Deutschland said it would consider seeking compensation and legal action.

An anonymous German official told Reuters that regions such as Berlin, where Germany's federal government is based, should not have Chinese technology in their mobile networks.

Berlin, after a review of Germany's reliance on two Chinese suppliers, is reassessing its relationship with China, which it calls both a partner and a systemic rival. The Ministry of Home Affairs wants to curb over-reliance on China's 5G technology, but estimates say it will face opposition from the Ministry of Digital Affairs.

If Germany were to make this move, it could further complicate the situation in the world because China could view this move as a tightening of the already existing technological sanctions of the West against it. Accordingly, we could expect a Chinese response that would also introduce some restrictions, which would affect the European and world markets.