Huawei and ZTE ban would impact mobile networks in Germany, German ministry fears

Huawei and ZTE ban would impact mobile networks in Germany, German ministry fears

Huawei and ZTE ban would impact mobile networks in Germany, German ministry fears

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A ban on certain components by Chinese companies Huawei and ZTE could have a significant impact on the German mobile network if they were to be replaced on a larger scale, according to a letter from the German economy ministry seen by Reuters.


The German government is currently conducting a review of telecom technology vendors which it says is not aimed at specific manufacturers.

If significant changes are required as a result of a ban or regulation, “there will likely be a significant impact on the operation of mobile networks and compliance with coverage requirements”, says the letter to the Economics Committee of the lower house of the Bundestag.

The precise impact on mobile operators and other economic players is not possible to assess, the ministry added, as it depends on individual decisions as well as transition periods.

The government’s review could lead to operators being asked to remove and replace components already built into 5G networks. Under current legislation, they would not receive compensation.

Critics of Huawei and ZTE say their close ties to Beijing’s security services mean their integration into mobile networks could give Chinese spies and even saboteurs access to critical infrastructure.

Huawei, ZTE and the Chinese government reject the claims, saying they are driven by a protectionist desire to back non-Chinese rivals.

It was reported a few days ago that Germany planned to ban telecom operators from using certain components made by Chinese companies Huawei and ZTE in 5G networks in a potentially significant measure to resolve the security issues.

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

© Thomson Reuters 2023

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