According to the semi-annual financial report of China Unicom, the company cut its capital expense by 44.5% year-on-year during the first half of 2013.
The report said that from January to June 2013, China Unicom's capital expense was CNY21.612 billion, a year-on-year decrease of 44.5%. The investments were mainly assigned to 3G and fixed-line broadband sectors, as well as basic transmission network sector that supported the development of 3G, 4G, and fixed-line broadband.
In addition, China Unicom continued to enhance cost management and control. During the reporting period, its costs of network, operation, and support increased by 2.2% year-on-year to CNY15.99 billion, accounting for 13.7% of its service income. The rate was 15.3% in the same period of last year.
Over the past few years, China Unicom has been focusing on the 3G construction. Based on a document submitted by the company to the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission of the State Council, China Unicom invested CNY129.3 billion in 3G construction between 2009 and 2010, and over 85% of the investments were used for Chinese-made equipment procurement. China Unicom plans to build 100,000 additional 3G base stations in 2013.
By the end of 2011, China Unicom had 237,000 3G base stations, covering all counties and cities and most villages, transportation routes, and tourist attractions in China. In 2012, China Unicom announced plans to build 100,000 new 3G base stations. According to this latest financial report, the Chinese telecom operator added 35,000 new 3G base stations during the first half of 2013.