Chinese telcos relish their new role at core of digital economy

In the Chinese zodiac, the rabbit is said to be clever, thoughtful and capable of diligently working its way to its goals. These may be handy traits for Chinese operators as they negotiate a period of transition in the Year of the Rabbit, but it’s fair to say that it’s been going swimmingly so far.

The three big telcos are being maneuvered into position as the infrastructure pillars of China’s digital economy, which is at the heart of the national growth plans. The digital economy accounted for just under 40% of China’s GDP in 2021 and is forecast to top 50% by 2025, according to China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology. The biggest manifestation of this shift to date has been the stellar growth in the operators’ cloud businesses.

All experienced more than 100% growth in their cloud businesses in the first three quarters of 2022; after two years of government bashing of the private tech sector, enterprises see that doing business with state-affiliated businesses is the safe choice.

Fidelity China Special Situations PLC (LON:FCSS), the UK’s largest China Investment Trust, capitalises on Fidelity’s extensive, locally-based analyst team to find attractive opportunities in a market too big to ignore.

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