News: China-based electrical appliance retailer Suning Appliance will likely launch services as a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO), aided by a new government initiative. The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology has proposed through its directive a two-year trial whereby telecoms operators will have to sign up at least two service resellers. The new initiative is aimed at promoting and introducing private capital in the telecoms industry with a bid to enhance competition and quality of service. New entrants can provide unique services that will help them establish an identity different from the country's three existing mobile network operators, China Telecom, China Mobile and China Unicom.
BMI View: The move will help cater to the rising demand for mobile services in China. BMI estimates that there will be 1.23bn mobile subscribers in 2013 and expects the total to rise 28.62% by 2017 to 1.58bn. During this period penetration will rise from 90.4% to 114.7%.