Rwanda Telecommunications Report Q2 2016
BMI View: Rwanda has a competitive mobile telephony market with three network operators, MTN, Tigoand Airtel helping to drive subscriber growth. In addition, growing demand for data services and theavailability of new low-cost internet-enabled devices should positively impact on 3G and 4G subscriberuptake, as well as the growth of data revenues. We expect Rwanda's internet sector to benefit from operatorinvestments in wireless data networks and new investment in FTTH infrastructure. Over our forecast periodwe expect Rwanda's internet sector to benefit from government investment in terrestrial fibre-optic and LTEnetworks.
Latest Updates & Industry Developments
In the first nine months of 2015 the Rwandan mobile market saw a net increase of 763,000 subscribers.
This is based on data reported by MTN and Tigo, as well as the regulator RURA. We estimate that thetotal number of mobile subscriptions reached 8.79mn by the end of 2015, equivalent to a penetrationrate of 75.7%. We expect the Rwandan mobile market to maintain positive growth throughout ourforecast period, through to 2020, due to strong competition between MTN, Tigo and Airtel, as well asan expanding economy.
By the end of 2020 we expect the number of mobile subscriptions to rise to 11.26mn. Growth acrossthe market as a whole will be driven by competition between the three network operators and by theincreased availability of new data services and internet-connected devices. Although mobile averagerevenues per user (ARPUs) are currently falling, we expect the decline to level off and trend towardspositive growth on the back of the growing uptake of mobile data services.
We maintain a positive growth outlook for Rwanda's broadband sector, based on governmentinvestment in terrestrial fibre-optic infrastructure and operator investment in LTE networks. Thegovernment's sponsorship of a national network will reduce deployment costs for individual operators,thus enabling them to offer services at more affordable prices. By 2020 we predict there will be 775,000broadband accesses, up from 366,000 at the end of 2015.
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