22 March 2019
General Economy As China Reforms Attempt to Stoke Growth

The Big Picture: 4G LICENSES

China has issued 4G wireless communication licenses for homegrown TD-LTE technology to the nation’s big three telecom firms — China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom, according to a statement from the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) on Wednesday.

China Mobile, the country’s largest mobile carrier, has been awarded a total of 130 MHz of paired spectrum for TD-LTE networks while China Telecom and China Unicom get 40 MHz each. The move takes the nation a step closer to the launch of 4G services.

Since the 4G network is technically 10 times faster than existing 3G technology, it is expected to help mobile carriers slash operating costs and improve the performance of cheaper handsets priced around 1,000 yuan (US$164), making them mainstream, market observers say.

The launch of 4G licenses in the time-division long-term evolution (TD-LTE) standard, instead of issuing them in the frequency division duplex-long term evolution (FDD-LTE) standard, has been widely expected by the market as Beijing aims to nurture the home-grown TD-LTE standard as an international standard.

China Mobile is expected to benefit from the MIIT’s latest move as the carrier can upgrade its 3G base stations, which use the time division-synchronous code division multiple access (TD-SCDMA) standard, into 4G base stations easily, according to industry experts.

China Unicom and China Telecom, which prefer the FDD-LTE standard, will have to rent China Mobile’s network over the next one to two years until the MIIT issues 4G licenses in the FDD-LTE standard. Market observers expect a total of 500 billion yuan of 4G investment to be kicked off after the issue of the licenses.

Shanghai stock options trading seen in April

Stock options trading could begin at the Shanghai Stock Exchange as early as April 2014, Shanghai Securities News reported Thursday. A simulated trading platform will be available after Dec. 26 for tests, the report said, citing the bourse’s general manager Xie Wei. Trading rules are awaiting regulatory approval.

Biden lays out concerns over China air defense zone

US Vice-President Joe Biden expressed Washington’s misgivings about China’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ) in talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing Wednesday, the South China Morning Post reported. A senior US official was quoted as saying that Biden “laid out our position in detail. He indicated that we don’t recognize the zone, that we have deep concerns.” Xi was equally clear in laying out Beijing’s view of the zone and of territorial disputes in the region, the official said. Xi called for closer co-operation and dialogue with America, while Biden said the bilateral relationship had to be built on trust, the report said.

–Contact HKEJ at [email protected]



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