China Telecom, China’s largest fixed-line operator, said it would acquire Beijing Telecom for US$793 million, the Financial Times reported. The Beijing carrier is an arm of China Telecom’s state-owned parent. The move is seen as an attempt to shore up the company’s bottom line as fixed-line businesses are increasingly threatened by mobile operators such as China Mobile and China Unicom. Hong Kong-listed China Telecom lost subscribers for the first time last year, and saw its annual profits fall by 13%. Chinese regulations forbid fixed-line operators from operating mobile assets.
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