China Unicom Breakup Seen
"The Chinese government is still preparing to award the country’s long-awaited 3G licenses, but the latest scuttlebutt has it that China Unicom Ltd. - the second largest Chinese mobile operator - will be a casualty of industry restructuring, according to Jefferies & Co. Inc.
Analyst George Notter writes in a research note today that "collective wisdom" from the 3GSM World Congress in Barcelona "has the Chinese government awarding three 3G licenses and breaking up China Unicom."
According to Notter, the thinking goes that fixed-line carrier China Telecommunications Corp. would get Unicom's GSM network and combine it with TD-SCDMA -- China's home-grown 3G standard -- while a second fixed-line operator, China Netcom Corp. Ltd., would acquire Unicom's CDMA networks. China Mobile Communications Corp. , the country's largest wireless carrier, would be left untouched."