Briefing

Germany says Europe must present a common front in dealing with China, Huawei

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Chancellor Angela Merkel said continent-wide regulations regarding the implementation of 5G infrastructure would avoid sending “mixed signals” to China, the largest purveyor of the technology. (Reuters)

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Talking point: Merkel’s diplomacy belies her own difficult position on all things China. As one of Germany’s biggest trading partners, China exerts significant economic sway in Merkel’s backyard. At the same time, she faces a revolt within her own Christian Democratic Union, of which many key members want to ensure parliament has a say in the government’s Huawei policy. By calling for a pan-European approach to Chinese technology, Merkel is trying to quell German privacy concerns—and avoid a patchwork of potentially contradictory laws that would ultimately be “disastrous” for the continent as a whole.