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Bangladesh - Key Statistics, Telecom Market Overview and Forecasts


Attention: There is an updated edition available for this report.

Bangladesh is one of the poorest, most densely populated, least developed countries in the world. Apart from its lowly economic status, major impediments to growth have included frequent cyclones and floods and the slow implementation of much-needed economic reforms. The country also has a reputation for the inefficiency of its state-owned enterprises. This report looks at the country’s surprisingly energetic telecoms sector, in particular, the effort that has been going into building telecom infrastructure and the progress that has been made on regulatory reforms. Some key measures of the status of telecommunications in Bangladesh are also provided.

Key Developments:

The fixed-line market recovers after the setback following the government clampdown on illegal VoIP operations; a number of cancelled fixed-line licences had been ‘revalidated’; mobile penetration grows to 65% by end-2012; the 100 million mobile subscriber mark within reach early in 2013; new licences awarded for building and maintaining a common telecoms transmission network; e-services start to build as country drives towards a ‘Digital Bangladesh’ by 2021; BTRC follows decision to ban selling pre-activated SIM cards without proper subscriber identification with strong enforcement policy; BTRC implements ten-second pulse call charging regime; regulator prepares for issuing of new VoIP operator licences.

Companies covered in this report include:

Bangladesh Telecommunications Company Limited (BTCL); Peoples Telecom (formerly Bangladesh Rural Telecom Authority (BRTA)); GrameenPhone; CityCell (PBTL); Orascom Telecom Bangladesh (formerly Sheba Telecom); Banglalink; Robi (formerly Aktel); Teletalk (Bangladesh Telegraph and Telephone Board); Airtel Bangla (formerly Warid Telecom); Bangladesh Railway (BR); Power Grid Company Bangladesh (PGCB); Fibre @ Home; Bangladesh Submarine Cable Company Limited (BSCCL); Summit Communications.


1. Synopsis
2. Key statistics
3. Country overview
3.1 Background
3.2 Economy
4. Telecommunications market
4.1 Overview of Bangladesh’s telecom market
4.2 Corruption inquiry
4.3 Background to development
5. Regulatory environment
5.1 Bangladesh Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (BTRC)
5.2 Telecommunications legislation - background
5.3 The National Telecommunications Policy of 1998 (NTP-98)
5.4 Telecommunications Act 2001
5.5 The Communications Convergence Bill 2001
5.6 The Telecommunication (Amendment) Bill 2010
5.7 Privatisation and liberalisation
5.7.1 Licensing in the fixed-line market
5.7.2 Expanded licensing regime
5.8 Regulatory developments
5.8.1 Registration of SIM cards
5.8.2 Warnings to operators
5.8.3 VoIP termination licences
5.8.4 Mandated broadband speed
5.8.5 Security
5.8.6 Infrastructure sharing
5.8.7 VoIP licensing and regulation
5.8.8 BTRC audits operators
5.8.9 International Terrestrial Cable (ITC) licences
6. Telecommunications infrastructure
6.1 National telecom network
6.1.1 Fibre optic networks
6.1.2 Grameen Telecom’s Village Project
6.2 Forecasts – fixed-line market – 2015; 2020
6.3 International infrastructure
6.3.1 International Gateways
6.3.2 Satellite networks
6.3.3 Submarine cable connectivity
7. Fixed network operators in Bangladesh
7.1 Overview of operators
7.2 Bangladesh Telecommunications Company Limited (BTCL) - formerly Bangladesh Telegraph and Telephone Board (BTTB)
7.3 Peoples Telecom (Formerly Bangladesh Rural Telecommunications Authority)
7.4 Sheba Telecom
7.5 WorldTel
7.6 Dhaka Phone
8. Notes on scenario forecasts
9. Related reports
Table 1 – Country statistics Bangladesh – 2012
Table 2 – Telecom revenue and investment statistics – 2010
Table 3 – Telephone network statistics – 2012
Table 4 – Internet user statistics – 2012
Table 5 – Mobile statistics – November 2012
Table 6 – National telecommunications authorities
Table 7 – Bangladesh’s GDP real growth rate – 2005 - 2012
Table 8 – Fixed lines in service and teledensity – 1995 - 2013
Table 9 – Bangladesh optical fibre network - 2011
Table 10 – Village Phones in Bangladesh – 1998 – 2007; 2010 - 2011
Table 11 – Forecast fixed line subscribers – 2015; 2020
Table 12 – Fixed-line subscribers by operator – 2010 - 2011
Table 13 – Fixed telephone line targets and teledensity – 2010; 2025
Chart 1 – Bangladesh fixed-line subscribers and penetration - 2001 - 2012
Exhibit 1 – Map of Bangladesh
Exhibit 2 – Operator licences in Bangladesh by licence category – 2012

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