As originally reported by Reuters, China Telecom Corp. Ltd.’s U.S. division is appealing a ban based on an FCC ruling. In late October, the Federal Communications Commission moved successfully to block all actions by China Telecom in the United States. The FCC based its ruling on the following allegations:
China Telecom is subject to exploitation, influence, and control by the Chinese government and is highly likely to be forced to comply with Chinese government requests without sufficient legal procedures subject to independent judicial oversight.”
The U.S. market is a huge loss in revenue to China Telecom, which has provided telecommunications services to U.S.-based customers for 20 years. With more than 335 million worldwide subscribers, Reuters China Telecom has swiftly moved to counter this FCC ruling. Their statement to the U.S. Appeals Court for the District of Columbia included the allegations that the FCC did not follow proper procedure and acted arbitrarily. Their legal team asserts that the FCC did not hold an administrative hearing, and additionally, they provided no concrete proof “of any imminent threat.”
In the meantime, the FCC ruling will force the company to notify its U.S. customers by Dec. 4 and to cease operating in the United States by the beginning of January. If the U.S. Appeals Court for the District of Columbia does not overturn the FCC ruling, China Telecom states that it “will be forced to cease significant operations, irreparably harming its business, reputation, and relationships.”
The company, in trying to prepare for the worst, is developing a strategy that consists of the following alternative for their customers:
[China Telecom] is actively negotiating an arrangement with another service provider that would allow it to seamlessly transfer its mobile service customers to the other provider.
Any attempts to receive a media statement from the FCC have gone ignored as of this time.
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