Procedure : 2019/2575(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : B8-0164/2019

Texts tabled :


Debates :

Votes :

PV 12/03/2019 - 9.22

Texts adopted :

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to wind up the debate on the statements by the Council and the Commission

pursuant to Rule 123(2) of the Rules of Procedure

on security threats connected with the rising Chinese technological presence in the EU and possible action at EU level to reduce them (2019/2575(RSP))

Hans‑Olaf Henkelon behalf of the ECR Group

European Parliament resolution on security threats connected with the rising Chinese technological presence in the EU and possible action at EU level to reduce them (2019/2575(RSP))  

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 10 December 1948 (UN A/RES/3/217 A),

–  having regard to the Charter of the United Nations of 1945,

–  having regard to the Agreement Establishing the World Trade Organisation (WTO) of 1994,

–  having regard to its resolution of 13 June 2018 on cyber defence(1),

–  having regard to its position adopted at first reading on 14 February 2019 on the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing a framework for screening of foreign direct investments into the European Union(2),

–  having regard to the 2018 Threat Landscape Report of the EU Agency for Network and Information Security (ENISA),

–  having regard to the measures for building strong cybersecurity in Europe proposed by the Commission on the occasion of the 2018 State of the Union address,

–  having regard to the Commission fact sheet of 6 June 2018 entitled ‘Digital Single Market: Political agreement on the rules shaping the telecommunication markets in the 5G era’,

–  having regard to the public hearing of its Committee on Industry, Research and Energy on connectivity of the digital future, held on 19 February 2019,

–  having regard to the study of its Directorate-General for External Policies of the Union of 19 July 2018 entitled ‘A new era in EU-China relations: more wide-ranging strategic cooperation?’,

–  having regard to the WTO Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) and to the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) Copyright Treaty,

–  having regard to the Eurostat statistics of 25 February 2019 on EU direct investment stocks in China and Chinese direct investment stocks in the EU, which showed that between 2013 and 2017, EU investments in China amounted to EUR 1 082 806 million and Chinese investments in the EU amounted to EUR 195 681 million,

–  having regard to Rule 123(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas implementing 5G is a key objective to achieving the digital single market and critical to economic and technological development in the EU in general;

B.  whereas 5G will improve the way EU citizens and businesses live and work, providing faster connections than ever before and driving efficiency and productivity;

C.  whereas Chinese technology suppliers have been expanding their footprint across the EU, as they often constitute a more advanced and cheaper option than their European competitors; whereas this presents a strategic challenge for the EU and other western countries;

D.  whereas the EU must remain open for investment and restrictive measures must only be taken for reasons of national security;

E.  whereas some EU strategic partners such as the United States, Australia and New Zealand have raised concerns over the use of Chinese equipment in 5G networks; whereas cyber attacks currently constitute one of the world’s most critical risks;

F.  whereas European companies and public bodies face increasing cyber threats, such as adversary-driven attacks like cyber espionage, malware, web-based attacks, web application attacks or phishing;

G.  whereas the European Union and China are two of the largest traders in the world, with China now the EU’s second largest trading partner, behind the United States, and the EU China’s largest trading partner;

H.  whereas in 2013 the EU and China launched negotiations for an investment agreement, with the aim of providing investors on both sides with predictable, long-term access to the EU and Chinese markets and of protecting investors and their investments;

I.  whereas Chinese companies might soon become global leaders in next-generation high-speed 5G mobile network technology;

J.  whereas a strong and innovative European ICT industry is a prerequisite for effective defence against external cyber attacks;

K.  whereas Chinese companies and public authorities are not bound by strict data protection rules, and therefore gain a competitive advantage when accessing big data and developing artificial intelligence;

L.  whereas the ICT sector in Europe is trailing behind those in the United States, Japan and China in many areas, despite several EU programmes, including Horizon 2020; whereas previously well-known European companies in the sector have almost all disappeared from the market, while their US and Chinese counterparts have become global players;

M.  whereas the EU risks losing the battle for leadership in artificial intelligence, given the importance of big data;

1.  Highlights the importance of a risk-based approach and mitigation measures, including the comprehensive exchange of information between operators, suppliers and national security authorities;

2.  Notes that a diversity of suppliers in the development and deployment of 5G networks is preferable, as it is not desirable that a significant element of critical infrastructure and technologies originates from a single country; calls on the Member States to critically evaluate any investments by Chinese private companies or by the Chinese state in this area;

3.  Calls for investment in high-tech areas to be conducted on the basis of reciprocity and fair competition, while ensuring adherence to security rules across the EU;

4.  Calls on the Commission to ensure fair competition in the single market and to evaluate the evolution of market opportunities for Chinese companies in the EU and for large, small and medium-sized EU companies in the Chinese market, with a view to ensuring a level playing field; believes that the EU should insist on reciprocity in all sectors, including high-tech sectors in the field of information and telecommunications;

5.  Notes the risk of China, owing to the sheer size of its market, being able to set future de facto standards in the information and communications industry; calls on the Commission, as the responsible EU competition authority, to work together with its global counterparts to establish a worldwide anti-cartel and anti-monopoly authority;

6.  Calls on the Commission to monitor the situation concerning the rule of law and compliance with human rights in China and to respond appropriately in the event that future developments in China should pose a security threat to EU citizens, companies or public institutions and bodies;

7.  Calls on the Commission to insist that China substantially step up its efforts to protect and enforce all intellectual property rights;

8.  Calls on the Commission to secure a level playing field with China, either by convincing the Chinese authorities to pursue a data protection policy similar to the EU’s or by adopting its own policy at EU level, so as not to hinder access to big data and the development of artificial intelligence; highlights the importance of doing so without impinging on the existing level of privacy and data protection in the EU;

9.  Notes that in dealing with Chinese companies’ increased technological capabilities and their presence in the EU, the EU must take action to reduce the risks related to cybersecurity; stresses that EU research programmes should further improve cyber-warfare defence capabilities;

10.  Calls for a comprehensive review to be undertaken at EU level into the software and IT and communications equipment and infrastructure used in the institutions in order to exclude potentially dangerous programmes and devices, and to prohibit those found to be malicious;

11.  Calls on the UN Security Council to treat cyber-warfare attacks with the same seriousness as other attacks that violate international law;

12.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Commission, the Council, the governments and parliaments of the Member States and candidate countries, the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights, the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe, the Committee of the Regions, for distribution to sub-national parliaments and councils, the Council of Europe and the United Nations.


Texts adopted, P8_TA(2018)0258.


Texts adopted, P8_TA(2019)0121.

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