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Domestic firms acquire 88% share of China Mobile 3G bid

DOMESTIC telecommunications firms, including Huawei Technologies and ZTE Corp, won an 88 percent share of China Mobile's latest 3G network bid, which has a total value of more than 8.6 billion yuan (US$1.26 billion), a Beijing-based telecommunications research firm said yesterday.

The Chinese firms led China Mobile's TD-SCDMA (time division-synchronous code division multiple access) equipment market because they invested heavily in the home-grown technology and penetrated the market early, analysts said.

In the third-phase TD-SCDMA network covering 200 cities, ZTE, Huawei and Datang Mobile gained a total market share of 72 percent. The domestic firms New Postcom, FiberHome, and Potevio combined for a 16 percent share. Overseas firms Nokia Siemens Networks and Ericsson Inc split the remaining 12 percent, according to Beijing Sandian Consulting, which was founded by officials from telecommunications carriers and industry experts.

"The home-grown firms took a dominant position and it will not change in a short period," said Sandian in a report obtained by Shanghai Daily.

China Mobile launched its third-phase TD-SCDMA network tender covering 200 Chinese cities in March. According to its former plan, this will involve the purchase of 39,000 wireless base stations with a total value of more than 8.6 billion yuan. Upon completion of these base stations, China Mobile's 3G network is expected to cover 70 percent of China.

The actual scale of this third-phase tender was larger than originally planned and the value was bigger than expected, Sandian said.

Among vendors, ZTE gained a 34 percent share, followed by Huawei's 22 percent and Datang Mobile's 16 percent. The remaining five companies each gained a market share of either 5 or 6 percent, Sandian said.

China issued 3G licenses in January to three carriers including China Mobile. The country will invest 400 billion yuan on 3G within three years, according to the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.



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