As the world’s most prosperous telecommunications market, China vowed to open the sector wider to share its growth opportunities with global enterprises, China’s Minister of Industry and Information Technology Miao Wei said.

Miao made the remarks when commenting on the development of China’s telecommunications sector in the past 70 years at a press briefing.

China encourages private capital in the resale of mobile communications and the connection of broadband and internet statistics centres, and also welcomes overseas enterprises to improve the openness of China’s telecommunications, Miao said.

He said China has built an “information silk road” with countries along the route of the China-proposed Belt & Road Initiative.

China has its own pace to open up the telecom industry to foreign cooperation since it is closely related to national security and involves many sensitive sectors, and other countries also have similar practices, said Ma Jihua, a veteran industry analyst.

Ma told the Global Times that in sharing growth opportunities with overseas telecom operators, China should “not only open the door but also try to provide a friendly market for them to run their business.”

As China’s comprehensive national strength continues to improve with further reform and opening-up over the decades, the country is able to speed up the growth of the telecommunications sector based on infrastructure support, Ma said, noting that developing 5G technology is an example.

During the last 70 years, the Chinese mobile communications industry has developed from a “2G follower, 3G breakthrough maker” to “synchronous developer in 4G” and a “leader in 5G,” the ministry said.

China’s 5G development has brought a historical leap to China’s telecommunications sector, and Miao said China leads the world in 5G standard-related patents and would invest heavily in independent 5G networks next year

Chinese tech companies have released 11 5G mobile phones, and Huawei unveiled on Thursday its flagship devices Mate 30 and Mate 30 Pro with the 5G mode.

The 5G technology will be applied to the industrial internet, internet of vehicles and long distance medical services.

The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology also discussed internet management and Virtual Private Network (VPN) services.

Wen Ku, the spokesperson of the ministry, said China’s regulations on internet management and VPN would not affect domestic and foreign firms that legally conduct cross-border business.

Foreign companies could apply for a dedicated line to carry out cross-border networking, and any legal business and use of the dedicated line are protected by law.

On whether China has tightened management over VPNs ahead of National Day, Wen said that it’s not a matter of the timing, but a principle China has always stuck to, as people are not allowed to watch improper content online, such as violence, drug-trafficking and pornography.

Miao said China’s achievements in telecommunications are reflected in people’s lives, as China tackled long-standing issues, including slow internet connection, expensive telecommunications service and limited coverage of networks.

Since 2014, the average download speed of fixed and mobile broadband in China has increased by nearly seven times.

Fibre-optic cable reaches 91 percent of families, and the proportion of users with more than 100 megabytes has reached 79.4 percent, the world’s highest.