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MII Refining New Handset Licensing Requirements

Information Times, 3/24/08

An informed industry source says that at a recently convened Ministry of Information Industry (MII) meeting on licenses in Shenzhen, a set of "detailed rules and regulations for operation" were produced for the first time since last October's State Council cancellation of the mobile handset manufacturing licensing system.

According to the information released at the meeting, after mobile handset licensing is officially liberalized, manufacturers will have to meet three requirements in order to be able to produce handsets and have access to the MII's network access testing center: first, manufacturers must have 'complete' manufacturing and testing facilities; second, they must meet product quality and reliability requirements; third, they must meet after-sales service requirements. The MII also introduced some new limitations on manufacturers: applicants must be manufacturers or possess the capacity to manufacture handsets. Initially, applicants will only be required to produce relevant documentation, as the MII will not conduct facility inspections at the outset. Afterwards, however, the MII will conduct strict inspections.

For companies that do not possess production capabilities, the MII has introduced certain new rules allowing these companies to use other companies' facilities or brands; however, these companies will be classified as "branded ODMs." If a company's brand is recognized, but the company does not itself have production capabilities, it will be allowed to use an ODM; however, in both of these cases, post-licensing inspections by the MII will be both strict and frequent.

Keywords: handset manufacturing license regulation policy mobile phone MII ODM State Council wireless

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