Reuters reports that Taiwanese incumbent Chunghwa Telecom is to set up a USD30 million ‘internet data joint venture’ with Vietnam’s military run cellco Viettel, as part of its efforts to expand overseas. Chunghwa is Taiwan’s largest operator, leading each of the fixed line, mobile and broadband markets by subscribers. Taiwan’s wireless telephony market reached 100% early in 2008 and Chunghwa has said it hopes to grow its business with overseas investments and projects as saturation leads to an inevitable slowdown. ‘We will use Vietnam as a base and then plan to go to other countries, such as Laos,’ Chunghwa ’s chairman Tan Ho-chen told a news conference on Wednesday. In the new venture, Viettel will own a 70% stake while Chunghwa will take the remaining 30%. The company said it plans to invest in every South-East Asian country with the exception of Burma (Myanmar).
Viettel, fully owned by the Vietnam military, was the country’s leading cellco by subscribers at the end of 2007, according to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms database, with 8.1 million subscribers and a 30% market share.