Congo-Brazzaville, Congo, Dem. Rep. and Burundi Telecommunications Report Q3 2017
BMI View: Market conditions in each of Burundi, Congo-Brazzaville and the Democratic Republic of theCongo are broadly similar, with mobile markets highly prepaid-focused and advanced non-voice (ie nonmessaging)data services largely absent. 3G migration is well advanced, however, and 4G services arebeginning to be rolled out. Low consumer incomes as well as volatile political, economic and securityenvironments weigh on potential returns on investment. Viettel's launch in Burundi shows there is scope fornew players, albeit only for those willing to take the risk. The wireline sector is weak and incumbentdominatedin all three markets although there are the first signs of competition in Burundi. Mobilebroadband accounts for nearly all the countries' broadband subscriptions as fixed providers are hamperedby lack of infrastructure and the high cost of international bandwidth.
Latest Updates And Industry Developments
We have amended our forecasts for the mobile sector in all three markets, raising the forecast slightly inthe DRC as quarterly losses decreased towards end-2016. We have increased our forecast for broadbandadoption in Burundi on the back of encouraging data from the regulator, although fixed-mobilesubstitution will not necessarily see all 3G/4G users make full use of broadband connectivity.