Europe telecoms lobby group ‘denounces’ bans on Chinese vendors

In this news, we discuss the Europe telecoms lobby group ‘denounces’ bans on Chinese vendors.

BERLIN (Reuters) – A group of companies representing challenger telecoms operators in Europe on Friday warned against banning Chinese equipment suppliers, saying doing so for political reasons would drive up costs and delay bids. at network level.

In a strongly worded statement, the European Competitive Telecommunications Association (ECTA) said it “denounces any ban on Chinese 5G providers for geopolitical reasons and stresses that such decisions can only be justified on the basis of facts. well established ”.

ECTA Groups alternative telecoms such as the German 1 & 1 Drillisch, the Iliad of France and the Spanish Masmovil. China’s Huawei Technologies, world leader in the networking market, is also on board.

Huawei’s position in Europe has come under pressure from a US campaign to purge next-generation networks of kits that Washington says can be used for espionage – claims the Chinese company denies.

The ECTA statement comes after France imposed restrictions on Huawei equipment which, according to sources familiar with the matter, amounted to a de facto ban.

Politics also played an important role in the decision taken last week by Orange Belgium and Proximus to replace Huawei with Nokia as the provider of radio access network equipment for their shared 5G network in Belgium.

ECTA chief executive Luc Hindryckx told Reuters that the statement reflected concerns from member CEOs that adopting a common European approach to assessing supplier risk – known as the Toolbox – was leading more and more member countries to impose “real or de facto bans” on Chinese suppliers.

Excluding Huawei and ZTE, another Chinese supplier, would leave telecoms with only three suppliers to choose from – the other global players are Nokia, Ericsson and Samsung.

“A reduction in the number of global suppliers from five to three will not only impact the telecommunications industry by increasing costs, negatively affecting performance, delaying the deployment of 5G networks and limiting the potential for innovation. “Said ECTA.

Industry consultant John Strand disputed this opinion, however, saying Nordic operators Telenor, Telia and TDC had torn up and replaced Chinese equipment “without increasing costs.”

Reporting by Douglas Busvine; Edited by Susan Fenton

Original © Thomson Reuters Corporation

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