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Sole bidder PCCW wins HK's fifth 3G mobile license
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PCCW's Telephone Limited has won a tender for the CDMA2000 spectrum in Hong Kong

The local operator was the only bidder for the fifth third-generation (3G) mobile license offered by the Hong Kong government, according to the Office of the Telecommunications Authority (OFTA), the local regulator. 

Before 17:00 PM on October 12, the deadline for bidders to register, PCCW was the only applicant. In accordance with previously set procedures, if there were only one company bidding, then the license would be given directly to the company.


PCCW stands as the provisional successful bidder, a spokesman from OFTA said.


The government issued the CDMA license in order to offer CDMA roaming services in the city and to improve its strategic position as a world city and gateway to Chinese mainland.


Previously Hong Kong authorities issued four 3G mobile licenses but all of them were based on WCDMA technology.


The result doesn't jive with the expectations of many insiders. Analysts expected China Unicom to bid for the Hong Kong CDMA2000 license. China Unicom issued a declaration that it has been actively seeking partners to form a joint venture or cooperate in bidding for the license, but for various reasons it could not reach a commercial agreement before the bidding deadline.


China Unicom is the sole CDMA operator on the Chinese mainland with some 40 million customers.


Industrial insiders estimate that China Unicom's drawback from the bidding is probably related to the reconstruction of Chinese mainland's telecommunications industry. But before any solution is finalized, China Unicom certainly won't rashly throw away a huge investment.   


( by Wang Zhiyong October 17, 2007)

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