SENIOR Chinese official Chen Zuo'er has blamed the mobile telephone licence row on a planned 'change in market structure'. On the first day of a two-day meeting of the Sino-British Joint Liaison Group (JLG) on personal communications system licences, Mr Chen welcomed the abundant information supplied by the British side. 'We have waited [for such information] for a long time,' he said. The talks followed a year-long deadlock over a government plan to issue six new mobile phone licences. The Chinese JLG team leader, Zhao Jihua, had earlier accused Britain of failing to provide adequate information, saying China had always been positive about finding a solution. Before the start of yesterday's meeting, Mr Chen said: 'The problem is not about the number of licences issued. It is the change of market structure by the Government. It is a change in policy. 'This is a government action straddling 1997. That's why China must take part before the Special Administrative Region government was set up.' He said this was to ensure 'free economic development' and 'healthy competition' instead of interfering with the market. Following a lengthy discussion in the morning, both sides said the atmosphere was 'good'. Alan Paul, who led the British team, said: 'The experts of the two sides had a very full discussion. The atmosphere was very good and the attitude of both sides was very pragmatic.' The talks continue today.