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China Unicom enters Cambodia

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A man talks on the phone in front of a China Unicom sign. AFP

China Unicom enters Cambodia

China Unicom, the country’s largest telecoms operator, has expanded into Cambodia to build optical telecommunication pathways in the Kingdom as part of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

The Hong Kong-listed company officially opened its China Unicom (Cambodia) subsidiary on Monday to become the latest industry player to enter Cambodia’s crowded telecommunications market.

Minister of Posts and Telecommunications Tram Iv Tek welcomed China Unicom’s entrance into Cambodia.

Investment in the construction of telecommunications infrastructure by China Unicom within countries in the BRI would bring significant contributions to the development of the telecommunications industry in Southeast Asia, he said.

“We believe that cooperation between Cambodian and Chinese businesses will continue to deepen in the future, bringing better quality cloud-based network and telecommunications services to local companies and Chinese investors.

“Moreover, the increased involvement of China Unicom will assist in the development of a ‘Digital Cambodia’ in the near future,” Iv Tek said.

China Unicom Global chairman Meng Shusen said the establishment of the Cambodian subsidiary builds a bridge for mutual information and connectivity between the Kingdom and China.

“China Unicom upholds the ideology of localised business operations in the Belt Road Initiative and will strengthen cooperation with Cambodian businesses to develop the local telecommunications market with its entry.

“It also hopes that its initiatives will not only provide quality telecommunications services to Chinese enterprises in Cambodia, but also assist Cambodian enterprises to invest in China, thus forging strong and advantageous cooperation to complement the Belt and Road Initiative,” Meng said.

China Unicom has participated in the construction and ownership of more than 20 landline network projects and more than 30 submarine network projects across the world, the company says.

It also possesses more than 80 point of presence (PoP) service access points globally, working closely with international businesses and service providers to offer a safe and reliable end-to-end cloud-based network.

The global telecommunications group also provides integrated and comprehensive information and communications services across the world, especially for enterprises in Southeast Asia, China Unicom says.

Statistics from the Telecommunication Regulator of Cambodia (TRC) show that 20.8 million SIM cards were registered during the first half of this year, up 9.4 per cent compared to the same period last year.

Internet users, both mobile and fixed internet, increased 31.6 per cent to 15.8 million during the first six months, up from 12 million in the same period last year, the report added.

Three companies, Metfone, Cellcard and Smart, together have 90 per cent of total users in the market.

Last year, Cambodia had 12.5 million internet users and 19.16 million registered SIM cards.

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