COMDEX: Acer eyes stake in Chinese ISP

Bolstered by China's opening to foreign investment following the China-US World Trade Organisation (WTO) deal earlier this week, Taiwan's Acer Group is now considering taking a stake in a Chinese ISP, a senior Acer executive said.

Acer, which already operates its own ISP in Taiwan, has been itching to jump into the Chinese Internet market, but the company's plans to date have been hampered by the country's restrictive attitude towards foreign ownership in 'Net ventures, said Simon Lin, president and chief executive officer at Acer, the group's core PC making parent company.

However, in the bilateral WTO agreement between China and the U.S. signed earlier this week, in order to gain entry to the global trade organization, China agreed to allow local Internet companies to have up to 49 percent foreign ownership.

"This is good news, we will now be able to officially invest in Internet companies in China," said Lin.

Acer's first goal is to invest in a Chinese ISP in order to accelerate the Taiwanese vendor's push into Internet-related services, but Lin declined to give any further details about the company's China plans.

Other Taiwanese companies are also expected to seek investment opportunities in China's rapidly growing Internet market, particularly in the emerging ASP segment, Taiwanese officials said.

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