Telecom & Wireless

China Telcos Set 2004 Targets

A recent report in the People's Post and Telecommunications on state-run telecom companies' 2004 targets notes that China Telecom Group, the nation's top fixed-lined operator, expects its operating revenue in 2004 to grow 8% and above, with a net customer numbers increase of around 20 million, similar to the level in 2003.

The No.2 fixed-line operator, China Netcom Group, is expected to focus on turning its losses around and restructuring with a planned $2 billion initial public offering planned for perhaps as soon as the third quarter of this year. Netcom targets a revenue rise of 8.7% and a net subscriber growth of 13.94 million for 2004. The group also aims to add 5 million more broadband users this year.

China Mobile did not provide 2004 target figures, but the paper says it intends to ramp-up expansion of its operations, strengthen its network and realize a goal to be "entirely listed," among other objectives. China Unicom plans to grow revenue by around 20% in 2004, and has the goal of becoming a Fortune 500 company. Unicom's revenue from core operations jumped 32% last year. Its combined subscriber base for its global system for mobile communications network and code division multiple access network exceeded 92 million in 2003, and it had 12.43 million Internet subscribers.

China Railcom, the telecom network operator managed by the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission, is targeting revenue of CNY10 billion for its core operations in 2004, up from CNY7.14 billion last year. Railcom expects its fixed-line subscribers to exceed 10 million from 6.89 million in 2003, and broadband users to reach 700,000 in 2004. China SatCom, the smallest of the state-run companies, provided no earnings targets for 2004, but is placing most emphasis on development for 2004.

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