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The Cost of Paid Peering with Chinese ISPs

Hi folks,

We got plenty of positive responses in our last email regarding China's
slow transnational network. Many are suggesting it is likely influenced by
commercial decisions instead of censorship. It seems like the three Chinese
ISPs don't really have enough peering internationally in Asia, and they
have very strong bargaining power when it comes to peering.

Some suggest the cost of moving data to China is way lower if an ISP peers
with US/European ISPs than directly with the Chinese ISPs. We assume the
reason why those US/European ISPs offer cheaper prices is that they have
settlement-free peering with Chinese ISPs. However, the "free-tier"
capacity is simply not enough to handle the demand -- the US/European ISPs
now have way more traffic going into China, thus saturating the link and
causing congestion.

So we are wondering, do the Tier-1 US/European ISPs really have
settlement-free peering with Chinese ISPs? If we want to do paid peering
directly with the Chinese ISPs or purchase the full/partial transit, what
is the price range?

>From the BGP information, we know some of the peers of AS4134 (the biggest
one) are:
- Telia Carrier(AS1299)
- Cogent Communications(AS174)
- NTT Communications (America)(AS2914)
- Level3(AS3356)
- Tata Communications(America) Inc (AS6453)
- Verizon Business/UUnet(AS701)
- Zayo Bandwidth(AS6461)
- AT&T Services, Inc.(AS7018)
- GTT Communications Inc.(AS3257)
- Comcast Cable Communications, LLC(AS7922)

It would be much appreciated if the operators of any such networks can give
chime in. Thanks!

Pengxiong Zhu
Department of Computer Science and Engineering
University of California, Riverside
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