BEIJING, March 6 (TMTPOST) —— China is going to establish 600 thousand new 5G base stations in 2023 to reach the target of having more than 2.9 million 5G base stations in total, according to the speech made by the Minister of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) during China’s Two Sessions last Sunday.
The number of 5G base stations to be built in 2023 is almost the same as in 2022. There are many 5G base stations in cities, and the goal is to make 5G base stations cover more rural areas in China and improve connections in industrial areas, said Jin Zhuanglong, the head of the telecom regulator.
The 5G+ plan is aimed at expanding the applications of 5G base stations in the Chinese economy. In addition, more efforts should be made in upgrading the manufacturing industry in China. The empowerment of 5G technology plays a crucial role in boosting the leapfrog development of Chinese manufacturing. More than 10 thousand 5G factories are set to be built during the 14th Five-Year Plan (2021–2025).
From the perspective of 5G development, it is of great importance to give full play to the government, enterprises, and research institutes to gain experience in promoting 5G technology. Supported by the MIIT, a working group of IMT2030 (6G) has been established to build a platform that integrates production, study, research, and application for industries. It will also encompass research institutions and basic operators for further international cooperation, as well as the research and development of the communication industry and technology.
China has entered the 5G era and has built the largest and most advanced 5G network in the world. More than 2.34 million 5G base stations have been built to consolidate China’s infrastructure. As for the application of 5G technology, there are over 575 million users of 5G mobile phones in China. The 5G technology has been applied in more than half of 97 categories of the national economy, such as mining, ports, electricity, and large aircraft manufacturing.
China built 887,000 5G base stations last year, accounting for more than 60% of the world’s total, according to a statistical bulletin of the communications industry in 2022 issued by the MIIT. In 2022, 180.3 billion yuan（$26 million） was invested in 5G development by the three fundamental state-owned telecom companies in China and China Tower, accounting for 43 percent of telecom fixed asset investment.
By the end of 2022, 21.3 percent of China’s total 5G mobile base stations had been finished, up 7 percentage points from the end of the previous year. While continuing to widen the coverage of 5G in prefecture-level cities, the technology is gradually accessible to towns and rural areas as needed.
China had 1.683 billion mobile phone users by the end of 2022, and the penetration rate had risen to 119.2 mobile phones per 100 people, higher than the global average of 106.2 mobile phones per 100 people. 5G mobile phone users accounted for 33.3 percent of the total mobile phone users in China, 2.75 times higher than the global average (12.1 percent).