ROME – Parliamentary report casts a shadow over China’s 5G supply in Italy

In its report on cyber protection and security, the Italian parliamentary security committee (COPASIR) has acknowledged that concerns about Chinese penetration in Italy’s 5G communications network are “largely well-founded.”

For the committee, lawmakers should consider excluding Chinese tech giants Huawei and ZTE from public tenders for the supply of 5G technology. However, the committee’s non-binding opinion suggested that such interventions could jeopardise the feasibility of essential projects  for the development of new technologies.

This is the main reason why neither the EU nor any member state have yet adopted measures to ban or limit the activities of Chinese operators, while being aware of the possible risks that could arise, the MPs pointed out.

Huawei denied the allegations, saying they are purely motivated by politics. The debate over cyber security should be based on facts, while so far, no evidence has been provided, said the Chinese company in a statement.

“Due to the global nature of the supply chain, excluding a company on the basis of where its headquarters are located does not guarantee greater security for national infrastructures,” Huawei added, expressing their willingness to cooperating with all Italian government entities.

Last July, the former government adopted emergency legislation to strengthen state powers in supply deals for 5G networks. The so-called golden powers allow Italy to exclude certain companies from public tenders for telecommunications if they pose a security risk.

(Gerardo Fortuna | EURACTIV.com)

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