China Telecom expands international reach with Liquid partnership; mulling investment in Chile

10 May 2018

China Telecom Global (CTG), the international arm of state-owned operator China Telecom Corporation has signed a strategic collaboration partnership with pan-African group Liquid Telecom, CommsMEA reports. Under the agreement, the operators will be able to serve their respective enterprise and wholesale customers with extended network coverage across the Asia and Africa regions. CTG has an existing PoP at Liquid’s East Africa data centre in Nairobi, and will look to establish PoPs in the latter’s facilities in Johannesburg and Cape Town. The two operators will also explore joint service opportunities under the partnership. Changhai Liu, China Telecom’s MD for the Africa and Middle East region said of the deal: ‘With more than 50 countries in the region, Africa is nonetheless the booming new market with the highest development rate just after Asia, and a very important market for CTG. This collaboration will enable both CTG and Liquid Telecom to better serve our customers and explore untapped business potential for further development. Under this partnership, we are well positioned to enhance the connectivity and network infrastructure in both regions.’

In a related development, meanwhile, La Tercera writes that CTG officials recently met with the head of Chile’s regulator, the Department of Telecommunications (Subsecretaria de Telecomunicaciones, Subtel) to discuss its interest in investing in the Chilean telecoms market. The nature of CTG’s interest was not specified, however, with Undersecretary of Telecommunications Pamela Gidi quoted as saying: ‘It is excellent news for the national market that a company of the size of China Telecom is interested in starting investments in Chile. Our mandate is to deepen competition in the telecommunications sector and new entrants always bring more and better competition. We hope that the interests of these actors can be specified in the short term and for future concessions.’ An unnamed source was cited by the paper as saying that the telco might be considering participating in tenders for fibre-optic network construction works, or providing enterprise and wholesale services.