China - Telecoms, Mobile, Broadband and Forecasts--ChinaCCM adds new report
The Chinese telecommunications market is the largest in the world. With the mobile sector still expanding at over 15% going into 2009, and the long-awaited licensing of 3G services completed after finalising the industry restructure, the market is poised for yet another boost amongst what is hoped to be a more level playing field. The importance of the regulatory regime must not be underestimated in a market like China, where political and commercial considerations are closely intertwined.
China's telecommunications industry experienced much disruption during 2008. In early 2008, massive snow storms, the worst in five decades, caused widespread disruption to telecom services. The snow storms killed at least 60 people and left tens of millions to experience a cold, dark Lunar New Year holiday. In excess of 33 million fixed and mobile services were cut and direct economic losses incurred as a result of the fierce snowstorms. Then, later in the year, a major earthquake struck near the Sichuan provincial capital of Chengdu. The 7.5 magnitude quake resulted in thousands being evacuated from buildings in Beijing, some 1,500km from the epicentre. These natural disasters tested the networks of the major telcos, not to mention their disaster recovery response times.
Despite these testing events, the market continued to experience healthy growth. Not even the global financial crisis could stall the profound growth that has been the phenomenon of the China market in the last decade. The networks withstood the onslaught of the Olympic Games and although uncomfortable under the scrutiny of the international press and the media glare due to China's strict enforcement of Internet regulations, the country's networks were robust and successfully beamed coverage of the major sporting event worldwide.
China surpassed Japan in 2004 as the market with the second most broadband lines after the US. In mid-2008 China became the largest broadband market in the world, finally passing the US. Going into 2009, China's broadband subscriber population passed the 80 million milestone. China has also become the top DSL market in the world. Despite this huge subscriber base, penetration remains comparatively low, meaning there is still much room for growth.
China tied the US as the online population leader in early 2008 as the number of Internet users soared to 221 million. Such explosive growth in Internet use comes despite government efforts to block access to material considered subversive or pornographic. Entering 2009, the online population reached 300 million and growth showed little sign of slowing.
Possibly the most significant change in the Chinese telecommunications market finally occurred in mid-2008 when the market itself was transformed into three major full service operators. The restructuring merged six of the country's state-owned mobile phone and fixed-line operators into three nationwide carriers offering fixed-line and wireless services, instead of dividing coverage in terms of region or type of service. The newly formed China Mobile (News - Alert), China Telecom and China Unicom are expected to compete fiercely in 2009 to establish themselves as full-service operators.
Finishing a tumultuous year, the most anticipated event in the country's telecom market finally occurred in December 2008 when China issued the long awaited 3G licences and in so doing is poised to become one of the world's major 3G mobile markets. The local development of TD-SCDMA is seeing commercial deployment through China Mobile largely due to the fierce commitment on the part of the government to make sure that China becomes'a significant player.'
It is clear that 2009 will surely test the newly established operators, vigorously competing for market share amongst cash-conscious consumers after the global financial crisis peak last year.
China-Internet, broadband, IP telephony and telecoms statistics-2004; 2008
Sector | 2004 | 2008 |
Internet users (million) | 94.00 | 298.00 |
Annual growth | 18.2% | 41.9% |
Internet subscribers (million) | 71.70 | 97.86 |
Number of Chinese websites (million) | 0.67 | 2.88 |
Broadband subscribers (million) | | |
DSL | 16.9 | 67.0 |
Total | 25.8 | 83.4 |
Subscribers to telecoms services (million) | | |
Fixed-line telephone subscribers | 311.7 | 341.0 |
Penetration | 24.0% | 25.8% |
Mobile phones | 317.2 | 641.2 |
Penetration | 24.4% | 48.5% |
| (Source: based on MII, Global Mobile, Point Topic and CNNIC data)
*In the restructure of China's telecoms industry, China Tietong was merged into China Mobile; China Telecom gained the CDMA network of China Unicom and the telecommunications infrastructure of China Satcom; China Netcom (News - Alert) was merged into China Unicom which was left with a significant GSM subscriber base.
*The telecom industry recorded over RMB800 billion in revenue, up 11.5% year-on-year and nearly RMB300 billion in fixed asset investment in 2008, up 28.2% year-on-year.
*China had close to 1,000 million phone users by end-2008, including mobile phones, fixed-line phones and PHS handsets. Mobile subscribers comprised 65% of the total.
*In the long anticipated award of 3G licences, China Mobile was issued with a TD-SCDMA licence; China Unicom a WCDMA licence and China Telecom a CDMA2000 licence. Awarding of the licences was brought forward as part of an economic stimulus package in the midst of the global economic crisis.
*Despite increased government controls on politically sensitive web content, the number of websites continues grow strongly, with nearly 3 million websites in China going into 2009, with an annual growth rate over 90%.
*The total number of broadband subscribers continues to grow from nearly 85 million going into 2009. China is on course to become the world's leading nation in terms of fibre subscribers in 2009, set to attract up to 18 million new subscribers in 2009 alone, and outpacing current leaders Japan and South Korea. There were around 6 million FttH/FttB subscribers by end 2008, with China Telecom capturing 80% of the market and China Unicom the remainder.
*The top three countries in terms of total cable TV subscribers in 2008 were China, the United States and India, with China leading the pack with 160 million subscribers.
*China Mobile plans to invest nearly RMB60 billion (US$8.6 billion) on the development of its 3G network in 2009 and China Netcom aims to invest RMB100 million (US$14.6billion) on network expansion and capture a third of the market, in a bid to narrow the gap with China Mobile. China Telecom is to spend RMB80 billion (US$11.7 billion) in the next several years to expand the network of its new mobile phone business.
Data in this report is the latest available at the time of preparation and may not be for the current year.
The following notes provide some background to our scenario forecasting methodology:
*This report includes what we term scenario forecasts. By describing long-range scenarios we identify a band within which we expect market growth to occur. The associated text describes what we see as the most likely growth trend within this band.
*The projections shown in the tables in this report are based on our own historical information, as well as on telecommunication sector statistics from official and non-official, national and international sources. We assume a possible deviation of 15-20% around this data.
*All statistics for GDP, revenue, etc are shown in US$, in order to maintain consistency within and between markets. At the same time we acknowledge that this can introduce some irregularities.
For those needing high level strategic analysis and objective analysis on China, this report is essential reading and gives further information on:
*The introduction of 15 measures by the Chinese government to support TD-SCDMA technology. The policies fall into six categories: financial aid, project support, network construction, product research, commercialisation, and industry development.
*The formal launch of China's new information and communications department in May 2008. The new agency, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), replaces the ten-year-old Ministry of Information and Industry (MII).
*Orders by the MIIT in February 2009 for China Telecom and China Unicom to close their Xiaolingtong (Little Smart) wireless service by end-2011.
*Chinese government consideration of changing further regulations to limit China Mobile's dominance in the market. In September 2008, the MIIT was trialling number portability in Tianjin and Shenzhen. This was followed by orders for the newly formed operators to share infrastructure resources.
*China's commitment to keep the economy growing at an estimated 6% in 2009, in the midst of the global financial crisis. The State Council announced a massive infrastructure spending program as part of an active fiscal stimulus plan aimed at boosting the country's slowing economy.
*Chinese online-video site Youku.com receiving a long-awaited license from China's State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT) in July 2008, in a sign that China's government may not take as tough a line on privately owned online-video companies as some had feared.
*China's relaxed access for foreign investors in September 2008, to its booming telecommunications industry by cutting minimum required investments, but retained a ban on foreign majority ownership of ventures.
*Aims by the government to broadcast all TV programs in digital format by 2010 and complete cable TV digitisation by 2015.
*The successful launch of the ChinaSat-9 broadcast satellite in 2008 which is expected to lead to a relaxation of government restrictions on satellite receiving devices.
*China's plans to build its own Silicon Valley as it transforms Guangdong and neighbouring Hong Kong and Macau into a'significant innovation centre' by 2020.
*Continued explosive growth in Chinese Internet use, which is driving a sharp rise in profits at online companies as online gamers, online music use, online video use, internet shopping and social networking continues to rise together with online advertising spend.
*Google's (News - Alert) launch in late 2008 of a music search service in China that allows users to access music legally online in a forum backed by some record labels and supported by advertising revenue.
*The Chinese government blocking access to Google's YouTube in early 2009, despite asserting that it does not'fear the internet.' The government continues to warn companies such as Google, Chinese search engine Baidu and even Skype (News - Alert) that they needed to do more to censor "inappropriate content".
Table of contents
1. Key Statistics
2. Telecommunications Market
2.1 Overview of China's telecom market
2.2 China's telecom market restructure in 2008
2.3 Fixed-lines and mobiles
2.4 Timetable for China's telephone users
3. Regulatory Environment
3.2 Tenth Five-Year Plan (2000-2005)
3.3 Eleventh Five-Year Plan (2006-2010)
3.4 Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT)
3.4.1 Ministry of Information Industry (MII)
3.4.2 MII expansion
3.4.3 Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT)
3.5 2008 Global economic crisis: how will China react?
3.5.1 China's RMB4 trillion for infrastructure spending
3.6 Previous restructuring of the telecommunications operators
3.6.1 WTO accession
3.7 Yearly summaries of major regulatory developments
3.7.1 Year 2009
3.7.2 Year 2008
3.7.3 Year 2007
3.7.4 Year 2006
4. Major Telecom Operators
4.1 Overview of major players
4.1.1 2002 industry restructure
4.1.2 Drivers for further business restructuring in China
4.1.3 2008 industry restructure
4.1.4 Newly formed entities
4.2 China Mobile Ltd (CML)
4.2.1 Company overview
4.2.2 Financial and operating highlights-Annual Report 2008
4.2.3 Recent developments
4.2.4 China Tietong (merged into China Mobile)
4.3 China Telecom
4.3.1 Company overview
4.3.2 Financial and operating highlights-Annual Report 2008
4.3.3 Recent developments
4.3.4 China Satcom (merged into China Telecom)
4.4 China Unicom
4.4.1 Company overview
4.4.2 Financial and operating highlights-Annual Report 2008
4.4.3 Recent developments
4.4.4 China Netcom (merged into China Telecom)
5. Telecommunications Infrastructure
5.1 Overview of infrastructure developments in China
5.2 National telecom networks
5.2.1 Backbone Internet networks
5.3 International infrastructure
5.3.1 Submarine cable infrastructure
5.3.2 Satellite infrastructure
5.4 IP networks
5.4.1 IP-Virtual Private Network (IP-VPN)
5.4.2 Peer-to-Peer (P2P) streaming
5.5 Next Generation Networks (NGNs)
5.6 China's world first eco city
5.7 Environmental focus for smart grids
5.7.3 Call for a modern grid
5.7.4 Smart grid in Anhui Province
5.8 China builds its own Silicon Delta
5.9 Snow storms damage operator infrastructure
5.10 Earthquake response
6. Internet Market
6.1.1 Internet subscribers
6.2 Internet regulations and censorship
6.3.3 Government e-commerce projects
6.3.4 E-payment systems
6.3.7 Social networking
6.3.8 Search engines
6.3.9 Instant Messaging (IM)
7. Broadband Market
7.2 Broadband statistics
7.3 Broadband forecasts
7.4 Broadband networks
7.4.2 Cable modems
7.4.3 Digital Subscriber Line (DSL)
7.4.4 Fibre-to-the-Home (FttH)
7.4.5 Broadband over Powerline (BPL)
7.4.6 Wireless broadband
7.5 IP telephony/VoIP
7.5.1 Market overview
7.6 Fibre-to-the-Home (FttH)
7.6.1 Market overview
7.6.2 Gigabit Ethernet/FTTx+LAN
8. Convergence (News - Alert)
8.1 Overview of media convergence
8.2 Triple play models
8.3 Television broadcasting
8.4 Digital TV
8.4.1 Broadband TV
8.4.2 Cable TV
8.4.3 Satellite TV
8.4.4 Digital Terrestrial TV (DTTV)
8.4.5 Interactive TV (iTV)
9. Mobile Communications
9.1 Overview of China's mobile market
9.2 3G licences
9.3 Mobile statistics
9.4 Mobile Internet
9.5 Regulatory issues
9.5.1 Price wars
9.5.2 Subscriber registration
9.5.3 Calling Party Pays (CPP)
9.6 Mobile technologies
9.6.3 PAS/PHS (Little Smart/Xiaolingtong)
9.6.5 Third Generation (3G) mobile
9.6.8 Fourth Generation (4G) mobile
9.7 Mobile handset market
9.8 Mobile voice services
9.8.1 Prepaid cards (SIM and PIM cards)
9.8.2 Satellite mobile
9.9 Mobile data services
9.9.1 Market overview
9.9.2 Short Message Service (SMS)
9.9.3 Wireless Application Protocol (WAP)
9.9.4 Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS)
9.9.5 General Packet Radio Service (GPRS)
9.9.6 Push-to-Talk (PTT)
9.9.7 Enhanced Data for GSM Evolution (EDGE)
9.9.8 Broadband wireless data services
9.9.9 Mobile TV
9.10 Mobile applications
9.10.1 Market overview
9.10.2 Surge in new applications development
9.10.3 Global positioning systems (GPS)
9.10.5 Mobile gaming
9.10.6 IM search services
9.10.8 Mobile music
9.10.9 Mobile Internet
9.10.10 Push email
10.2 Forecasts-fixed-line market to 2018
10.3 Forecasts-Internet services to 2018
10.4 Forecasts-broadband market to 2018
10.5 Forecasts-mobile market to 2018
11. Glossary of Abbreviations
Table 1-Country statistics China-2008
Table 2-Telecom revenue and investment statistics-2008
Table 3-Telephone network statistics-2008
Table 4-Internet user statistics-2008
Table 5-Broadband statistics-2008
Table 6-Mobile statistics-2008
Table 7-National telecommunications authorities
Table 8-Fixed-line and mobile subscriptions and penetration rate-1998 - 2008
Table 9-Telephone subscribers fixed versus mobile overview-1998 - 2007
Table 10-China Mobile subscribers, annual change, ARPU, market share-1997 - 2008
Table 11-China Mobile voice usage-2006 - 2008
Table 12-China Mobile selected value-added revenue-2007 - 2008
Table 13-China Mobile revenue composition of value-added business-2006 - 2008
Table 14-China Mobile advanced services usage-2007 - 2008
Table 15-China Mobile financial data-2000 - 2008
Table 16-China Telecom key operating statistics-2004 - 2008
Table 17-China Telecom (China Unicom) CDMA mobile subscribers-2002 - 2008
Table 18-China Telecom financial data-2001 - 2008
Table 19-China Telecom revenue breakdown-2007 - 2008
Table 20-China Telecom wireline revenue breakdown-2007 - 2008
Table 21-China Telecom wireline VAS revenue growth and mix-2007 - 2008
Table 22-China Telecom CAPEX-2007 - 2008
Table 23-China Unicom GSM mobile subscribers-2002 - 2008
Table 24-China Unicom key operating metrics-2007 - 2008
Table 25-China Unicom financial data-2001 - 2008
Table 26-China Unicom CAPEX breakdown-2007 - 2008
Table 27-China Netcom subscribers by service-2003 - 2008
Table 28-China Netcom ARPU by service-2003 - 2008
Table 29-China Netcom revenue percentages-2003 - 2008
Table 30-China Netcom financial data-2003 - 2008
Table 31-China Netcom traditional and innovative revenue ratios-2005 - 2008
Table 32-Network distribution of bandwidth-2004 - 2008
Table 33-CNNIC Internet statistical survey-December 2008
Table 34-Internet users and annual change-1996 - 2008
Table 35-Internet subscribers and annual change-1996 - 2008
Table 36-Growth of websites in China and annual change-2002 - 2008
Table 37-Website classification and Domain Names in China-2008
Table 38-Registered .cn domain names by code-2008
Table 39-Estimated value of B2C e-commerce market-2004 - 2006; 2010
Table 40-Breakdown of e-commerce users-2008
Table 41-Online gaming revenues-2004 - 2008
Table 42-Market share of online search engines-2005 - 2008
Table 43-Broadband subscribers and annual change-2000 - 2008
Table 44-Broadband subscribers and growth by access type-2008
Table 45-Broadband subscribers and households - 2008
Table 46-China Telecom broadband subscribers and annual change-2003 - 2008
Table 47-China Netcom broadband subscribers and annual change-2003 - 2008
Table 48-Cable modem Internet subscribers and annual change-2000 - 2008
Table 49-DSL Internet subscribers-2000 - 2008
Table 50-Registered Tom-Skype users in China-2005 - 2008
Table 51-IPTV subscribers-2004 - 2012
Table 52-Overview of cable TV market-2008
Table 53-Cable TV households-1996 - 2011
Table 54-Digital cable TV subscribers and penetration rate-2003 - 2015
Table 55-Mobile subscribers by operator and annual change-2008
Table 56-Mobile subscribers and annual change-1995 - 2008
Table 57-Mobile Internet subscribers and annual change-2006 - 2008
Table 58-China Unicom CDMA subscribers pre/postpaid, MOU, ARPU-2002 - 2008
Table 59-China Unicom CDMA network statistics-2007
Table 60-Little Smart (PHS) subscribers-2002 - 2008
Table 61-Mobile phones manufactured in China-2004 - 2007
Table 62-Prepaid mobile subscribers by operator-2008
Table 63-China Unicom postpaid/prepaid mobile subscribers by network-2004 - 2008
Table 64-China Mobile postpaid/prepaid mobile subscribers-2004 - 2008
Table 65-Mobile data revenues-top three countries-1H 2008
Table 66-China Mobile mobile data service users-2004 - 2008
Table 67-China Mobile and China Unicom mobile VAS revenue-2008
Table 68-China Mobile Value Added Business revenue breakdown-2006 - 2008
Table 69-China Mobile VAS revenue breakdown (selected items)-2006 - 2008
Table 70-China Mobile VAS subscribers (selected items)-2006 - 2008
Table 71-SMS messages sent in China and annual change-2000 - 2008
Table 72-China Mobile SMS usage volume and annual change-2003 - 2008
Table 73-China Unicom SMS usage by network and annual change-2005 - 2008
Table 74-CNNIC WAP usage report-March 2007
Table 75-Forecast fixed-line subscribers & penetration-lower growth scenario-2007 - 2008; 2013; 2018
Table 76-Forecast fixed-line subscribers & penetration-higher growth scenario-2007 - 2008; 2013; 2018
Table 77-Forecast Internet subscribers & penetration-lower growth scenario-2007 - 2008; 2013; 2018
Table 78-Forecast Internet subscribers & penetration-higher growth scenario-2007 - 2008; 2013; 2018
Table 79-Forecast broadband subscribers & penetration-lower growth scenario-2007 - 2008; 2013; 2018
Table 80-Forecast broadband subscribers and penetration-higher growth scenario-2007 - 2008; 2013; 2018
Table 81-Forecast mobile subscribers & penetration-lower forecast-2007 - 2008; 2013; 2018
Table 82-Forecast mobile subscribers & penetration-higher forecast-2007 - 2008; 2013; 2018
Exhibit 1-Telecommunications industry statistics from the MII-2006 - 2008
Exhibit 2-Restructuring of China's telecommunications undustry
Exhibit 3-China's agreed schedule for telecom liberalisation-2002 - 2007
Exhibit 4-Restructuring-scenario 1
Exhibit 5-Restructuring-scenario 2
Exhibit 6-Restructuring-scenario 3
Exhibit 7-China Mobile Ltd at a glance-2008
Exhibit 8-China Telecom Corporation Ltd* at a glance-2008
Exhibit 9-China Unicom Ltd at a glance-2008
Exhibit 10-China Network Communications Group Corporation (Hong Kong) Ltd at a glance-1H 2008
Exhibit 11-Regional/international fibre optic cable networks
Exhibit 12-Selected Chinese satellite service providers and satellites
Exhibit 13-China Satcom satellite fleet
Exhibit 14-Types of telecom convergence
Exhibit 15-BesTV Corporation
Exhibit 16-Jiangsu IPTV applications
Exhibit 17-Overview of'eye will'
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