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Germany to ban Huawei from 5G networks by 2029

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  • Germany will remove Huawei and other Chinese technology components from its 5G networks by 2029, driven by national security concerns.
  • Major telecom operators like Deutsche Telekom, Vodafone, and Telefonica Deutschland have agreed to phase out Chinese components from core networks by 2026.
  • The decision aligns with broader European and U.S. efforts to secure critical infrastructure and reduce dependency on Chinese technology.

Germany has announced a decisive move to eliminate Chinese technology components from its 5G mobile networks by the end of 2029. This initiative, driven by national security concerns, aims to bolster the integrity and resilience of Germany's telecommunications infrastructure. The decision marks the culmination of years of debate and aligns with broader European and U.S. efforts to secure critical infrastructure.

In a preliminary agreement with the authorities, Germany's major telecommunications companies, including Deutsche Telekom, Vodafone, and Telefonica Deutschland, have committed to phasing out components produced by Chinese firms such as Huawei and ZTE from their core networks by the end of 2026. This phase-out will extend to antennas and towers by 2029, ensuring a comprehensive removal of Chinese technology from the country's 5G infrastructure.

Germany's interior ministry confirmed that discussions with mobile carriers are ongoing, with the government's national security and China strategies serving as key motivating factors. A spokesperson for the ministry stated, "This decision is crucial for safeguarding our national security and ensuring the resilience of our telecommunications infrastructure."

The move to remove Huawei and ZTE components from Germany's 5G networks is part of a broader trend among European countries to address security concerns associated with Chinese technology. The United States has been a vocal advocate for such measures, highlighting the potential risks posed by Chinese firms' involvement in critical infrastructure.

Despite the clear security rationale, the phase-out has faced resistance from telecom operators due to the significant financial costs involved. Similar challenges have been observed in the U.S., where telecom companies have also grappled with the expenses of removing Chinese equipment.

The Chinese embassy has not commented on Germany's decision. However, the move is likely to strain relations between Germany and China, given the significant role that Chinese technology firms have played in the global telecommunications market.

Germany's decision to phase out Chinese components from its 5G networks underscores the importance of securing critical infrastructure in an increasingly interconnected world. By taking this step, Germany aims to enhance the security and resilience of its telecommunications infrastructure, ensuring that it can withstand potential threats and maintain the integrity of its national security.

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