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Docomo profit warning marks end of an era for Japan telecoms

Fee cuts and 5G investments to deliver 'one-two punch' to earnings, industry executive warns

An NTT Docomo store in Osaka. The major Japanese carrier booked its highest profit in over a decade last fiscal year but expects a large drop for fiscal 2019.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- Leading Japanese wireless carrier NTT Docomo forecast its first operating profit drop in five years Friday in a sign that the age of big profits for the industry is ending as it faces new competition, government pressure to lower fees, and the need to make 5G network investments.

"It will be difficult to raise profits from telecommunications on its own," President and CEO Kazuhiro Yoshizawa said. Growing other segments will be key for the company, he said.

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