China's Ministry of Information Industry has issued an announcement on the telecom service quality of the fourth quarter of 2006, in which it reports the basic situation of China's telecom market during that period and puts forward some reminders to both telecom service operators and consumers.

In the fourth quarter of last year, users' complaints against the six main telecom operators decreased dramatically, but there were still many complaints about telecom value-added service, particularly in regards to group sending of short messages (mobile spam), telecom operators' alteration of charging standards, and not marking the prices as required.

In the fourth quarter of 2006, MII received totally 5659 complaints from telecom users, of which 870 were about communication quality, increasing 10.5% over that of the previous quarter; 2161 were about service quality, up 16.9%; and 2623 were about charging and cost, rising 8.9%.

In the fourth quarter of the year, China Telecom's (CHA) user complaint rate was 4.47 per million people, increasing by 28% over that of the third quarter; China Netcom's user complaint rate was 5.07 per million people, declining by 22%; China Mobile's (CHL) user complaint rate was 7.37 per million people, increasing 15%; China Unicom's (CHU) user complaint rate was 9.17% per million people, increasing by 23%; and China Tietong's user complaint rate was 16.69 per million people, up 7%.

MII announced that China's telecom industry made remarkable achievements in constructing a smooth network and advocating civilized service during the year. MII says the telecom market operations and services were better regulated in the fourth quarter of the year.

MII says that the domestic and international communications quality was generally good during the period and the overall service quality of telecom operators generally reached their relevant standards.

MII made special mention of five companies that were disciplined during the quarter for either sending mobile spam or charging incorrect fees to MVAS users. Those companies were Beijing Chixuntong Technology Company, Beijing Yima Shentong Information Technology Company, Beijing Heheshengshi Technology Company, Shanghai Nanfang Xundian Communications Technology Company and Sichuan Xiwang Tongxin Company.

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