China Telecom says profit up 11.8 percent as Internet, mobile data businesses grow

China Telecom Ltd., one of the country's three main state-owned carriers, says its profit rose 11.8 percent in the first half of the year as its Internet and mobile data businesses grew.

The Beijing-based company said Wednesday it earned 11.4 billion yuan ($1.9 billion), or 0.14 yuan (2 U.S. cents) per share, in the six months ended June 30. Revenue rose 5.3 percent to 165.9 billion yuan ($27.2 billion).

Profits for China's state-owned phone industry have been squeezed by intense competition and the costs of rolling out fourth-generation service.

China Telecom said its total number of mobile subscribers declined by 3 percent to 180 million but mobile data usage rose 30 percent. Revenue for the company's Internet data centers also rose 30 percent.