Borje Ekholm, chief executive of Ericsson, warned that Europe needs to address issues related to regulatory policies and an uncertain investment environment to avoid falling behind on 5G.

In a blog post, Borje Ekholm urged Europe to accelerate the deployment of next-generation technologies, saying that the delay in this regard was more related to “a series of structural issues” than to issues involving supplier selection.

“The biggest obstacle is mainly related to regulatory policies. 5G must be seen as a key part of the infrastructure of European countries. But this is not the case today.

He emphasized that the “poor investment environment for European service providers” is another key reason why continental Europe lags behind markets such as North America, Northeast Asia and Australia. He added that the cost of capital and investment in new technologies were “very difficult to prove.”

Borje Ekholm warned that backwardness in 5G would endanger Europe’s industrial base. He believes: “With two global suppliers in Europe, Continental Europe has the leading prerequisites.”

He claims that Ericsson is the first supplier to have a real-time commercial network in all frequency bands on four continents, and its technology currently supports 23 commercial 5G networks.

Borje Ekholm pleaded with European authorities to solve the problems that hinder the development of 5G. He believes that the cost of spectrum, strict supervision and the term of license will damage the economic benefits of this new technology.