Shanghai FTZ Shows Its Hand on Telecoms Opening Up - Could this be the long-awaited breakthrough in VATS?

On January 6, 2014, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology ("MIIT") the internet and telecommunications services regulator and the Shanghai municipal government jointly issued the Opinions on Further Opening Up Value-added Telecom Business to Foreign Investment in the Shanghai Free Trade Zone ("FTZ") (the "Opinions"). This short, but significant document provides for the liberalisation of foreign investment in certain types of value-added telecom services ("VATS") within the FTZ. It was accompanied on January 7, 2014 by an interpretation in the form of a question and answer session called Shanghai Free Trade Zone Opening up Value Added Telecoms Business to Foreign Investment Interpretation.

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