Deutsche Telekom has put all deals to buy 5G network equipment on hold, as it awaits the resolution of a debate in Germany over whether to bar Chinese vendor Huawei on security grounds.
Europe’s largest telco finds itself in a tight spot after senior lawmakers in Chancellor Angela Merkel’s coalition rebelled and called for a ban on Huawei, which is a key vendor for its existing mobile networks in Germany and Europe.
At the same time in the U.S., a $26 billion deal for Deutsche Telekom’s T-Mobile unit to merge with Sprint hangs in the balance.
Washington imposed an export ban on Huawei in May. It called on allies to follow suit, alleging the global network market leader’s gear was insecure and that it was beholden to Beijing – concerns highlighted by President Donald Trump on Wednesday at a NATO summit in England.
A Berlin-based spokesman for Huawei declined to comment.