Business idea left disconnected

PUBLISHED : Friday, 24 June, 2005, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 24 June, 2005, 12:00am

Hunan native Zhou Hongtao says he is in trouble now China Unicom has decided to cancel its special long-distance mobile phone package. Mr Zhou bought 10 of the accounts on the second-hand market last year, hoping for a quick windfall. 'I thought I could set up a long-distance call booth on the street and make some money,' he said.

He was so enthusiastic about his business that he even ordered several specially made pay-phones from a friend. 'I charge customers 0.15 yuan per minute. On average I should have been able to make a few thousand yuan each month,' he said.

'I sold all my belongings and borrowed money from friends. My wife did not support my idea so I did not tell her. Now what can I do with these accounts? I will go broke, and I have no idea how to tell my wife.

'China Unicom now says it has to cancel the special package because it goes against regulations. That is ridiculous. It is in fact asking customers to pay for its mistake.'