21 May, 2015
He said that it is up to the providers to lower the fees they charge but that doing so would "increase the use of the internet services" in the country and lead to an increase in the companies' profits, according to a statement issued by China's State Council. Less than half the population of China has internet access currently, according to a BBC report.
The State Council said the construction of new telecoms infrastructure needs to be speeded up and that it has asked regulatory bodies to "cooperate and coordinate in order to provide a favourable environment for telecommunication companies".
"China has more cell phone users than any other country, but its internet service speed ranks below 80th in the world due to underdeveloped information infrastructure,” Li Keqiang said.
According to a report by Chinese state news agency Xinhua, the Chinese government has asked telecoms companies to "publish detailed plans to increase [broadband] speeds by over 40%, reduce prices and offer free upgrades to existing customers". It said that there are plans to monitor the services delivered by broadband providers and the charges they impose on a "stricter" basis.
Late last month, China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) announced that it will allow businesses to invest money in broadband in China.
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Diane Mullenex, Partner, Pinsent Masons