HONG KONG, April 22 China Mobile Ltd,
the world's largest mobile carrier by subscribers, posted a 0.3
percent rise in first quarter net profit as more 3G subscribers
signed on to its network.
The wireless carrier, which competes with smaller rivals
China Unicom (Hong Kong) Ltd and China Telecom
Corp Ltd, reported a net profit of 27.9 billion yuan
($4.5 billion) for the January-March period from 27.8 billion
yuan a year earlier, it said in a statement on the Hong Kong
stock exchange on Monday.
Many analysts did not give forecasts for the first quarter
although Deutsche Bank expected China Mobile to report a net
profit of 28 billion yuan in the first quarter. The carrier has
been reporting roughly flat to single-digit percentage rises for
its quarterly net profit over the past year.
China Mobile has more than 700 million mobile subscribers on
its network, twice the population of the United States, but it
is also the only operator in China without a contract to carry
Apple Inc's iPhones due to its incompatible proprietary
The results announcement came after the Hong Kong market
closed. China Mobile shares ended up 0.55 percent versus the
Hang Seng Index's 0.14 percent gain.
(Reporting by Lee Chyen Yee; Editing by Matt Driskill)