China Mobile bid could open the floodgates

16 Mar 2005

China Mobile’s bid for a controlling stake in a Pakistani telco could pave the way for other Chinese operators to begin their own international expansions. While China Netcom has already bought a stake in Hong Kong operator PCCW and China Unicom last week was awarded a mobile licence in Macao, both of these are territories controlled by Beijing. China Mobile’s offer for a 26% stake in Pakistan Telecommunications Co (PTCL) is the first true move towards overseas expansion by a Chinese telco. Local analyst Chen Jinqiao told China Daily that the bid could mark the beginning of an international buying spree by Chinese telcos. Chinese equipment manufacturers Huawei and ZTE have already forged partnerships with operators and vendors overseas.