China Telecom to spend €7.4b on network upgrade

China's leading fixed-line phone company, China Telecom will spend 80 billion yuan (€7.4 billion, US$11.7 billion) in the next several years to expand the network of its new mobile phone business, an Associated Press report said.

The money will go toward base stations and other upgrades to its wireless infrastructure as the company pushes to bring on more customers, CEO Wang Xiaochu, quoted by the report, said.

China Telecom should inherit about 43 million wireless subscribers, but it hopes to boost that to 100 million in the next two to three years with the help of a larger network, the company said.

The company and its parent, state-owned China Telecommunications, signed deals Saturday to buy a wireless network and accompanying business from China Unicom and its parent, China United Telecommunications, for 110 billion yuan (€10.2 billion, US$16 billion) as part of a government shake-up of the country's telecom industry.

The sale is expected to be completed before year's end.

Also Monday, China Telecom said it would lease the new wireless network from its parent for an amount equal to up to 28% of revenue from the new business.

Details of the agreement to purchase the mobile network were initially announced last month.