BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany’s Interior Ministry is examining all Chinese components that are already installed in the country’s 5G network, Minister Nancy Faeser was quoted as saying on Sunday, as Berlin re-evaluates its relationship with top trade partner China.
“We have to protect our communication networks,” Faeser told Bild am Sonntag newspaper, adding that the examination’s three priorities were identifying risks, averting dangers and avoiding dependencies.
“This is especially true for our critical infrastructure,” she said.
Germany has been considering banning certain components from Chinese companies Huawei and ZTE in its telecoms networks, a government source told Reuters last month, in a potentially significant move to address security concerns.
The German government has been wary of expressly singling out Huawei but there are concerns that such companies’ close links to Beijing’s security services mean that embedding them in the mobile networks of the future could give Chinese spies and even saboteurs access to essential infrastructure.