Start-up Hong Kong First Telecom has launched a Web-based service which allows PC users to make free voice and fax calls to the mainland and Hong Kong. The service is provided by an alliance between an arm of the mainland's State Information Centre (SIC), Guangzhou Business Administration Bureau and the United States Internet advertising firm Doubleclick. The service is aimed at easing the way for foreign businesses to make contacts in the mainland, similar to a toll-free phone service. First Telecom director-general Robson Liang said the free Internet phone and fax calls made through its Web site, www.ip800.com , would widen business opportunities for mainland and foreign companies. To cement the alliance, SIC Telecom will buy a 6 per cent stake in First Telecom and help the Hong Kong-based start-up develop an Internet telephone network and business-to-business e-commerce opportunities in the mainland. Doubleclick will be responsible for finding advertisements for the site. Guangzhou Business Administration Bureau's role is to promote the service to the city's 230,000 enterprises. He said the Web site would derive income from advertising and a 500 yuan (about HK$467.60) monthly fee paid by those offering free calls. Separately, the State Information Centre is seeking to list its two economic information Web sites on the Hong Kong stock market. SIC vice-president Xu Zhanghe said the wholly owned operator of the www.cei.gov.cn site would list as a red chip before June. He said the listing vehicle planned to raise HK$1.5 billion to HK$2 billion.