China Netcom slims down for 3G launch

China Netcom, that country's number two fixed-line operator, is selling its fixed-line assets in two regions to its parent company China Netcom Communications Group for $448.9 million. The company specifically plans to sell its assets in Guangdong province and Shanghai, which are two areas largely dominated by rival China Telecom. Shedding the assets will allow China Netcom to streamline before it launches its 3G mobile services, which will be heavy on initial costs. While the industry is still waiting on those 3G licenses in China, many pundits are hopeful they will come out this year.

For more on China Netcom's fixed-line assets sale:
- see this article from the WSJ (sub. req.)