Chinese Networks Confirmed to Be in Infrastructure Sharing Talks
Published on: 2nd May 2014
Chinese regulators have confirmed rumours that the country's three mobile networks are looking to merge their towers infrastructure into a single operating company.
Shared passive infrastructure is increasingly commonplace across the world as it reduces costs and has the public benefits of needing fewer towers to meet the necessary coverage requirements.
In a statement, China's MIIT stated that it is aware of the talks between the three mobile networks, and that such an agreement would match the government's own plans to reduce environmental impacts and costs for the telecoms industry.
Beyond that it didn't comment, and the expected details of such an agreement are presumed to be a long way off.
With the mobile networks facing higher taxes, and slower growth from an increasingly saturated market, growth is expected to be from reaching ever more expensive to reach rural areas, and mobile data usage.
Shared infrastructure would significantly reduce the cost of expanding rural coverage, while cutting the number of towers needed in expensive urban areas can save on land rental fees.
The downside of the plans would be for telecoms equipment vendors who usually see a long term reduction in the size of network upgrade contracts, although there would be a short term boost from the integration works.
On the web: MIIT