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Belize - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

Belize - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

Belize government pays final instalment to secure BTL
One the smaller countries in Central America, Belize in many respects has closer affinities with English speaking countries of the Caribbean than with its immediate neighbours.
Belize's fixed-line teledensity and mobile penetration remain lower than in neighbouring countries. This is a legacy of insufficient market competition and underinvestment telecoms services, exacerbated by lax managerial standards within the incumbent telco Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL). However, BTL has recently adopted a reforming strategy under the moniker of New BTL', aiming to transform itself at all levels into an effectively competitive operator more commercially minded and focussed on cheaper pricing and customer retention. The company has undertaken significant investment in infrastructure, launching an LTE-A service at the end of 2016 and in mid-2017 completing a submarine cable to Ambergris Caye, enabling it to launch an FttP service in San Pedro.
The Belizean telecom market was liberalised in 2003 yet BTL continues to hold a monopoly in fixed-line services and is the dominant provider of mobile and broadband services. In 2009 the state renationalised BTL after a change of government brought to light a questionable Accommodation Agreement between the previous administration and the company. Although the rationale for the nationalisation was to improve conditions for consumers, BTL's prices remained high. The government has undertaken some measures to improve competition, notably by obliging BTL in mid-2013 to open its networks to VoIP services. In mid-2015 the government came to an agreement regarding an outstanding $22.5 million loan signed off in 2007 by a former BTL management team which the company subsequently considered unlawful. BTL was obliged to repay the government from its own funds. In November 2017 the government made the final payment to BTL's former owners following the renationalisation of the company in 2009.

Key developments:

SEUL submarine cable connecting the mainland with Ambergris Caye completed;
Government makes final payment for BTL following the 2009 renationalisation;
DigiCell launches LTE-A services;
Mobile sector accounting for over 90% of all phone subscriptions;
BTL reports stable telecom revenue for fiscal 2017.

1. Executive summary
2. Key statistics
3. Country overview
4. Telecommunications market
4.1 Historical overview
5. Regulatory environment
5.1 Public Utilities Commission (PUC)
5.2 Telecom sector liberalisation
5.3 Renationalisation of BTL
6. Fixed network operators
6.1 Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL)
7. Telecommunications infrastructure
7.1 Overview of the national telecom network
7.2 International infrastructure
7.2.1 Interconnection with other Central American countries
7.2.2 Submarine cable networks
8. Fixed-line broadband market
8.1 Introduction and statistical overview
8.2 Broadband statistics
9. Mobile communications
9.1 Introduction
9.2 Mobile statistics
9.3 Major mobile operators
9.3.1 BTL (DigiCell)
9.3.2 SpeedNet (Smart)
9.4 Mobile data services
9.4.1 Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS)
9.5 Mobile broadband
9.6 Mobile infrastructure
9.6.1 LTE
9.7 Mobile content and applications
9.7.1 Mobile banking
10. Related reports
Table 1 Country statistics Belize 2017 (e)
Table 2 Telephone network statistics 2017 (e)
Table 3 Internet user statistics 2017 (e)
Table 4 Broadband statistics 2015 (e)
Table 5 Mobile statistics 2017 (e)
Table 6 National telecommunications authority
Table 7 Evolution of GDP in Belize 2000 - 2017
Table 8 Telecom revenue by sector 2007 - 2014
Table 9 Telecom revenue 2000 - 2015
Table 10 BTL financial data 2010 - 2017
Table 11 BTL gross revenue 2015 - 2017
Table 12 Historic - Fixed lines in service and teledensity 1998 - 2009
Table 13 Fixed lines in service and teledensity 2010 - 2018
Table 14 International bandwidth 2005 - 2016
Table SEQ Chart 3 Historic - Internet users and user penetration 2000 - 2009
Table SEQ Chart 4 Internet users and user penetration 2010 - 2018
Table 15 Cable and DSL broadband subscribers 2005 - 2015
Table 16 Fixed broadband subscribers and penetration 2000 - 2016
Table 17 Wireless broadband subscribers 2010 - 2015
Table 18 Mobile subscribers and penetration 2000 - 2018
Table 19 Active mobile broadband subscribers 2012 - 2017
Chart 1 BTL financial data 2010 2017
Chart 2 Fixed lines and teledensity 2005 - 2018
Chart 5 Internet users and user penetration 2005 - 2018
Chart 6 Mobile subscribers and penetration 2003 - 2018
Exhibit 1 Major submarine cable networks links in Belize

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