Executives from China Telecom and China Mobile confirmed that the three largest Chinese telecom operators will establish a joint venture without sharing base stations.
Rumors previously spread on the Internet that China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom would jointly invest to establish a national base station company. After the founding of the company, it would be responsible for the new construction of base stations, towers, and pipelines of the three telecom operators. In the future, it would include the operators' existing base stations, towers, and pipelines.
However, the confirmation from China Telecom and China Mobile to local media squashed those rumors. Wang Xiaochu, chairman of China Telecom, said that the three companies will set up a company to avoid the repeat construction of facilities, which will help them reduce costs. He also revealed that apart from the joint venture, they currently do not have any other resource sharing cooperation plan or intentions. Dong Xin, vice president of China Mobile, also made a similar statement.
At present, details about the joint venture, including equity allocation, introduction of private investment, and tower rentals, are still being debated behind closed doors. They reportedly will refer to international tower company agreements to decide the acquisition costs and rental fees of towers. But more details about the dates for the incorporation of the joint venture have not yet been released.