Cable TV and Telecom Not to Cover Each Other's Business: ASRFT

An article carried by China Youth Daily July 12 saying cable TV may get permitted into telecom market has caused much stir in both TV and telecom industries and even resulted in fluctuations in Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges. But vice-minister of the information industry Zhang Chunjiang states publicly that it depends on state policy whether business of TV and telecom can open to each other.

Official from technology department of State Administration of Radio, Film and TV (SARFT) speaks well of the international trend for cable TV into telecom market. It means effecting interconnection of telecom, TV and computer networks and overlapped business among them but not to make the three into one. Now there are no big technological difficulties in connecting TV and telecom networks, but we must wait for policy changes in this regard.

However, will cable TV be opened to telecom? The official says it is not decided by ASRFT since it is a question depending on a change of social ideology.

While official from policy department tells the final decision is up to authorities above ASRFT.

As is reported, TV department is busy preparing for marching toward telecom industry. Vice minister of SARFT Zhang Haitao says by the yearend broadcasting network companies at central and provincial levels would have been put together and the Broadcasting Information Network Center under ASRFT would be turned into a giant corporate body like China Telecom.

While official from the Broadcasting Information Network Center tells that, before any policy change, currently they must abide by central authority's regulations issued in 1999, which provide clearly that telecom and TV business don't cover each other.

By PD Online staff member Li Heng

People's Daily Online ---