Chinese telecom giant Huawei was recently banned from buying US technologies without government authorisation due to data security issues. However, Washington has not been especially successful at pressuring its European partners into avoiding reliance on Chinese drones.
European governments have increasingly been buying China-built DJI drones, despite concerns from the US, Politico has reported.
The tech company DJI has a global monopoly on the production of drones – controlling a 74% share of the world market in 2018 – with French, Dutch, German, and British military and law enforcement agencies becoming increasingly reliant on the Chinese drones for their observation and inspection purposes.
In particular, DJI representatives confirmed for the outlet that a French commercial military company uses drones for surveillance, while in Germany, unmanned vehicles are being used in the navy, with a spokesperson for the country’s military confirming that he was not “aware of any security issues” related to the use of the drones.
However, a representative from the Dutch Ministry of Defence insisted that the Chinese drones are being used by the country’s military only for “different communications sections in order to make footage” and are not being used for reconnaissance due to security concerns, with the Netherlands relying on US-built Raven drones for such tasks instead.
“A number of DJI drones have been bought for unclassified and non-operational use, such…