Germany urges telcos to consider China risk

Germany urges telcos to consider China risk

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Germany’s government has doubled down on calls to reduce its dependence on Chinese equipment providers such as Huawei and ZTE, regardless of cost.

This is due to national security concerns according to Nancy Faeser, Germany’s interior minister in an interview with newspaper Handelsblatt.

“The risks have been known for a long time. Our security authorities have repeatedly warned against one-sided dependencies,” Faeser said.

“I do think that the providers had enough time to adapt to this.”

Faeser believes that the security risk should be considered as paramount even before potentially high costs.

These calls were supported by Annalena Baerbock, Germany’s foreign minister.

Baerbock said on Thursday in an interview with DW, a German newspaper: “For Germany, China remains a partner, a competitor, a systemic rival. But the aspect of systemic rivalry has become increasingly prominent in recent years.”

“China’s economic strategy aims to make it less dependent on other countries, while making international production chains more dependent on China.”

Several reports have also indicated that Germany would like to maintain its economic and trade relationship with China but would like to ensure that this becomes “fairer, more sustainable and more reciprocal”.

China is Germany’s largest single trading partner, with imports from China rising to 33.6% from a year ago to US$204.4 billion.

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