China slashes telecoms costs

Season of goodwill and all that

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China is to cut the cost of using telecoms services by 50 per cent, according to reports from the country's capital.

Although the cost of using the Net and phone are to come down, commentators have acknowledged that tariffs still remain comparatively high.

The State Development Planning Commission, the Ministry of Information Industry [MII] and the Ministry of Finance issued a joint statement yesterday.

According to reports, the new prices are to be introduced on January 1st 2001.

At this early stage it's not clear why the authorities decided to take such action.

One thought is that while the Chinese authorities are happy to crack down on human rights and suppress democratic uprisings, they simply don't have the stomach to face an angry mob demonstrating against high telecoms and Net costs. ®

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