The Chinese government is taking another stab at reforming the telecommunication sector: it ordered its three domestic telecom operators to share and co-build infrastructure to avoid repeat construction in the wake of industry restructuring
One question is whether the government’s intervention will lead to a more level-playing field? It is worthwile remembering that previous attempts to reform the sector have either failed or met with notably lower levels of success that expected. Like in most other contries, incumbent operators (e.g. China Mobile and China Telecom) have managed to maintain a dominant market share in their respective segments.
For sure, the new scheme is interesting as it creates de facto co-location. But it by no means implies that access – the real crux of the problem – will be secured for the rivals. In fact, the government may want to re-think its policy and consider alternative models to enhance competitiveness – like network separation.