China Telecom added 23 million 5G connections in the opening quarter of 2022, taking total year-on-year gains to nearly 100 million package subscribers as it booked double-digit growth in profit and revenue.

Mobile service revenue increased 5 per cent to CNY49 billion ($7.6 billion). The operator closed March with 210.8 million 5G package subscribers. Overall mobile customers increased 6.5 per cent to 379.5 million.

ARPU from mobile was down 1.1 per cent at CNY45.10.

In a statement, chairman and CEO Ke Ruiwen noted China Telecom continued to optimise its 5G network and industrial internet services, while moderately increasing investment. Network operations and support expenses increased 14 per cent to CNY35.3 billion.

Net profit rose 12.1 per cent to CNY7.2 billion with operating revenue growing 11.9 per cent to CNY119.6 billion. Net finance costs dropped 64.2 per cent to CNY195 million, as a share offering covered its capital requirements for key investment projects.

Industrial service revenue grew 23.2 per cent to CNY29.4 billion.