Provision of 5G Technology in Europe

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Publication Date 2019
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Reports and analyses relating to the development of the 5G networks across Europe, the role played by Chinese company Huawei as a leading stakeholder in the sector and the wider implications when it comes to bilateral and transatlantic relations.

Further information:

In March 2019, the European Commission published a set of guidelines regarding a common approach in the development of 5G technology across Europe. A number of actions was put forward for completion on national and EU levels, including a risk assessment due in October.

The involvement of Huawei - one of China's main companies and the world's biggest producer of telecoms equipment - in developing 5G networks in different countries across Europe later became connected to wider trade conflict between China and the United States. The US administration cautioned European allies against the use of Huawei's 5G technology and equipment over fears that would allow China to spy on sensitive communications and data. However, in its guidelines the European Commission refused to call for a ban on the company and left it to the Member States to decide on national security grounds.

In May 2019, the Chinese company is put on an export blacklist by the government of the United States over security concerns. The measures saw Huawei prohibited from purchasing American goods to be used in their telecommunications equipment and bared US imports of equipment produced by Huawei. Some analysts suggested American warnings could be connected to efforts to protect US tech giants from Chinese competitors.

Related Link(s)
Commentary and Analysis
Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 27/12/2018: Huawei and Europe’s 5G Conundrum
Carnegie Endowment for International Peace: Commentary, 18/03/2019: Should Europe Buy Chinese 5G Technology?
Bruegel: Podcast, March 2019: Backstage: 5G deployment in Europe
EPRS: At a Glance, April 2019: 5G in the EU and Chinese telecoms suppliers
The Guardian, 24/04/2019: As Europe builds its 5G network, security – not cost – must come first
Euro|Topics, May 2019: Why is Washington lashing out at Huawei?
BBC News, 30/05/2019: How damaging is the Huawei row for the US and China?
Bloomberg, 31/05/2019: Huawei Is a Huge Challenge for Europe's Spies
Euro|Topics, May 2019: Huawei ban: US grants a reprieve
Politico: Special Reports: The State of 5G
BBC News, 15/07/2019: Does 5G pose health risks?
Elcano Royal Institute: Analyses, 06/08/2019: Strategic autonomy in a new era: a Cold-War risk assessment of China’s involvement in the EU’s 5G networks
Chatham House: Expert Comment, 09/09/2019: Who’s Afraid of Huawei? Understanding the 5G Security Concerns

EurActiv, 16/04/2019: Belgian cybersecurity agency finds no threat from Huawei, as US increase pressure
EurActiv, 26/04/2019: UK minister: Huawei leaks ‘unacceptable’, criminal investigation possible
Politico, 15/05/2019: Trump signs order setting stage to ban Huawei from US
EurActiv, 16/05/2019: Europe must maintain own course after US blacklisted Huawei, Germany says
Politico, 16/05/2019: Macron: Blocking Huawei ‘not best way to defend national security’
Deutsche Welle, 16/05/2019: EU leaders: We won't follow Trump's Huawei ban
Politico, 20/05/2019: Trump’s Huawei ban spooks allies, industry
EurActiv, 21/05/2019: Huawei: US founding fathers would be ‘alarmed’ with Trump administration
Deutsche Welle, 24/05/2019: Huawei at center of US-China trade conflict
Deutsche Welle, 29/05/2019: Huawei: US wants to 'put us out of business'
BBC News, 29/05/2019: Huawei: US blacklist will harm billions of consumers
Deutsche Welle, 31/05/2019: China retaliatory tariffs on US goods come into force
Deutsche Welle, 02/06/2019: Trade war 'hasn't made America great again,' says China
Euronews, 03/06/2019: Britain listens to the United States on Huawei, Hunt says
Reuters, 07/06/2019: Europe's 5G to cost $62 billion more if Chinese vendors banned: telcos
EUObserver, 07/06/2019: China's Huawei sign deal to build Russia's 5G network
EUObserver, 13/06/2019: China's UK ambassador warns London over Huawei
Politico, 16/06/2019: EU must improve 5G and boost technology, say top companies
EurActiv, 17/06/2019: US ambassador: Europe should forget Huawei, embrace Western tech
Politico, 25/07/2019: Ericsson boss bemoans lack of European support on 5G
Politico, 30/07/2019: Huawei says US campaign hit business in Europe, no ‘major disruption’ overall
BBC News, 12/09/2019: Huawei chief offers to share 5G know-how for a fee
Reuters, 20/09/2019: Europe's China telecoms gear ban would cost industry $3.5 billion: report
EurActiv, 19/09/2019: Chinese ambassador asks EU for evidence that Huawei is a ‘security threat‘

European Commission: Towards 5G

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