Today (6th), China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology issued 5G commercial licenses to China Telecom, China Mobile, China Unicom and China Radio and Television, and operated 5G services.

The first three companies operate general communications business in the Mainland, commonly known as the “three major telecommunications operators”, which are familiar to the public. But “China Radio and Television” is unfamiliar. What kind of company is this?

According to public information, China Radio and Television, known as “China Radio and Television Network Co., Ltd.”, was established in May 2014. The chairman of the board is Zhao Jingchun, former deputy director of the Propaganda Department of the Henan Provincial Party Committee, with a registered capital of 4.5 billion yuan (RMB, the same below), shareholders. For the State Council, its main business is cable television networks.

It is worth noting that the funders, managers and regulators of China Radio and Television are subordinate to different units. The registered capital is arranged by the central government. The Ministry of Finance performs the duties of the funders on behalf of the State Council. The financial relationship is listed separately in the Ministry of Finance; the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television is responsible for the formation and escrow; the SARFT and the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology conduct industry supervision on the relevant business of China Radio and Television. 

“Triple network integration” promotes the main body

As early as 2010, the State Council promulgated the “Overall Plan for Promoting the Integration of the Three Networks”, and proposed the establishment of a national cable TV network company. In the same year, China Radio and Television Network Corporation began preparations.

The so-called “three networks integration” refers to the integration and penetration of telecommunication networks, radio and television networks and the Internet. According to the plan, China Radio and Television will integrate the national cable TV network into a unified market entity and give it the qualifications for broadband network operation and other services. The “fourth operator” after China Mobile, China Telecom and China Unicom, and the main body of “three networks integration”.

On May 5, 2016, when the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology issued the “Basic Telecommunications Business License” to China Radio and Television, it stated that it was to promote the integration of the three networks and approved China Radio and Television and its controlling subsidiary “China Cable TV Network Co., Ltd.” to operate the Internet. Domestic data transmission business, domestic communication facilities service business. However, China Radio and Television did not obtain a mobile communication business license at that time, which had little impact on the development of the industry and failed to change the monopoly pattern of the “three major telecommunications operators” in the Mainland.

Expert: Good news but little impact on the industry in the next year or two

For this time, the 5G license, Zeng Qingjun, deputy general manager of China Radio and Television, said that the license was actually issued to the national cable TV industry and the national broadcasting industry. The national broadcasting industry will use this opportunity to build a high-start modern communication network. The vast number of users can truly appreciate the smart radio and television services brought by the modern ultra-high-definition TV modern Internet of Things, and even the socialized smart city service, which can enable China’s technology industry services to promote the 5G comprehensive leadership situation.”

Wu Chunyong, an expert on three-network integration, also pointed out that China Radio and Television’s acquisition of a 5G license is good news and can play a catalytic role. “It means that China’s traditional cable TV network operators will be injected with new industrial development ideas and blood for the Chinese cable industry. A major industry development and opportunities to turn around.”

Wang Zhiqin, vice president of China Information and Communication Research Institute, also said that the introduction of China Radio and Television as the fourth mobile communication operator is conducive to promoting the sharing and sharing of radio and television networks and telecommunications networks, and solving network coverage problems in remote areas, but it is expected to be in the next year or two. The impact on the telecommunications market is small.

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