France likely won’t ban Huawei, but will encourage operators to avoid


The four French mobile operators receive clearer indications of the providers they will be allowed to select as 5G network providers, according to comments by the head of the French cybersecurity agency ANSSI.Although France will not impose an outright ban on using Huawei’s equipment, it will become more difficult for the China-based supplier to operate in the country. Guillaume Poupard told Les Echos that requests to use Huawei would be subject to refusal.

According to Le Monde, Huawei rivals Ericsson and Nokia will not be exposed to the same treatment. Poupard said operators who are not already using Huawei are encouraged to avoid switching to the China-based supplier.

“For those who already use Huawei, we issue authorizations for periods varying between three and eight years,” said Poupard. According to Reuters, he said that as of next week, operators who have not received explicit permission to use Huawei equipment for the 5G network may consider non-response after the legal deadline as rejection. of their requests.

Reuters announced in March that France would not ban Huawei but would seek to keep it outside the core mobile network.

Orange has already selected Ericsson and Nokia as 5G providers and has largely excluded the use of Huawei. Iliad’s Free chose Nokia for its 5G networks in France and Italy. (See Ericsson, Nokia at the front of the queue for Orange 5G contracts.)

Want to know more about 5G? Check out our dedicated 5G content channel here on Light Reading.

The situation is less clear for Bouygues Telecom and SFR, owned by Altice. Both operators used the Chinese provider for 4G networks, and telecom operators almost always stick to their existing 4G providers when upgrading to the non-standalone version of 5G, which uses the 4G core in in conjunction with a 5G radio access network (RAN).

According to previous reports, Bouygues Telecom and SFR have already indicated that they would seek compensation from the French state if Huawei were excluded. An AFP report noted that Huawei provides nearly 50% of Bouygues Telecom’s 4G RAN, the rest of Ericsson. About 52% of SFR’s network is based on Huawei equipment.

Michel Combot, director general of the French Telecommunications Federation (French Telecommunications Federation), said in March that if Huawei equipment were banned from 5G networks, Bouygues Telecom and SFR would be forced to replace 4G antennas in entire regions of the country. .

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Anne Morris, editor, light reading special


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