LONDON—Vodafone will remove Huawei technology from the core of its European networks following Britains decision to restrict the Chinese companys role in 5G and new EU guidelines on the firms equipment, Chief Executive Nick Read said.
“We have now decided, as a result of the EU toolbox and the UK governments decision, to take out Huawei from the core,” he told reporters on Wednesday.
“This will take around five years to implement at a cost of approximately 200 million euros.”
Britain last month allowed Huawei a limited role in new mobile networks—defying U.S. pressure for an outright ban on security grounds—but excluded it from the core and imposed a 35 percent cap in the less-sensitive radio network.
Huawei has repeatedly denied U.S. allegations that its equipment could potentially be used by Beijing for spying.
Read said Vodafone would only have to make minor adjustments to comply with the rules in Britain, where it has not deployed Huawei equipment in its core network.
He broadly welcomed the British approach, which he said was evidence-based and differentiated between the core and non-core, but opposed caps on the use of particular vendors by operators.