Gemplus formed a joint smart card company with Tianjin Telephone Equipment Factory in China.

The venture, Tianjin Gemplus Smart Card Co., is 51%-owned by Gemplus, which produces more chip cards than any other maker. The unit got support from the Chinese Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications and Telecom China.

Initially, production will be limited to phone cards, several hundred thousand of which have been ordered by Telecom China.

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