China's media regulator has established a four billion yuan joint venture with the aim of developing a nationwide cable television network - a project that has been hurt by bickering with provincial governments. To be known as China Cable Television Network (CCN), the firm is the latest entity to run a three-million-kilometre national fibre optic backbone network with the intention of being a super-highway for a cable television audience of 105 million. 'We are the only company in China with licences in both nationwide cable network and pay-television operations,' said CCN chief financial officer Bai Weiqun. 'We have both the expressways and the vehicles.' China Electronics Corp (CEC), one of the mainland's largest conglomerates under central government control, owns 45 per cent of CCN after a cash injection of 1.8 billion yuan. The remaining 55 per cent stake is controlled by the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television, China Central Television, Central People's Broadcast Station, China Radio International and China Media Group. The media regulator's contribution was the backbone network, previously owned by another Beijing-controlled firm, China Broadcast Network (CBN), which was established in 1998 and controlled 46 television channels and 100 radio stations. The project failed as CBN was unable to secure provincial cable television network assets due to squabbling over sales terms with local governments. CEC chairman Yang Xiaotang said: 'Our investment in CCN is a long-term plan. The development of CCN is beneficial for our products and development in hardware, digital and communications solutions. 'CBN didn't work out as it did not have economies of scale. There is no point for such business if you only reach one million viewers.' CCN would focus on pay-television and telecommunications value-added services such as broadband internet and data transmission. CEC managing director Fan Qingwu said CCN did not rule out the possibility of developing programming for foreign media groups while it might also buy content from other producers and work with regional broadcasters to develop pay-television services. Jeanette Chan Kim-yum, a partner at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, said: '[CCN] must show enough sweeteners to local cable operators, otherwise it will repeat CBN's failure.' She said it also needed to prepare a viable business plan to lure investment and financing.