Based on a careful study on issues related to telecom costs, China's National Development and Reform Commission and Ministry of Information Industry have worked out a general set of procedures on pushing forward the reform on telecom costs.

According to the general plan, emphasis will be made this year on three tasks of promoting mobile phone one-way charging, lowering roaming fees and regulating fees of package services. The study result also shows that the reform on telecom cost is restricted by some deeper issues in the telecom industry. It says the telecom market structure is unbalanced and there is still a big gap between the basic telecom operators of China Telecom, China Netcom, China Mobile and China Unicom regarding capital strength and profit-making ability.

According to the report, the general goal of pushing telecom cost reform is to build up a complete telecom cost management mechanism. The content of pushing forward the reform includes continuing to lower the local calling fees to meet the demand of the construction of new rural areas; implementing one-way charging for mobile phones; lowering the upper limit for domestic roaming fees; reasonably solving the monthly rental fees of telephone services; straightening out a package service so that it is easy to understand for customers; and lowering the telephone cost of international long distance calls and domestic long distance calls.

By the end of June 2007, there were 870 million telephone users in China, including over 500 million mobile phone users and 370 million fixed-line phone users.


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