German chancellor Angela Merkel will back Deutsche Telekom in its attempts to expand into China.
According to sources cited by WirtschaftsWoche, the German government “wants to help Telekom gain access to the mobile communications market in China.” This would not be an unprecedented move for Merkel, who previously provided a similar level of support for Nokia and Ericsson in the Chinese market.
The operator already has business in China, via a cloud offering in partnership with Huawei, but it is believed that it is trying to fully enter into the notoriously sealed-off market.
The source said that Deutsche Telekom’s “clear focus is Europe and the US,” but that there is significant interest in China, despite the operator denying any claim.
There are concerns from Brussels however that support for Deutsche Telekom’s entry into China would come with an understanding of reciprocity that would keep the German market open for Huawei to supply 5G equipment.
The notorious Chinese-owned company has been banned from the US outright through to May 2021, and has also been blocked from the UK’s 5G mobile networks.
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