Burkina Faso - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses
Burkina Faso makes further efforts to end mobile roaming charges
The telecom sector in Burkina Faso continues to be stymied by slow regulatory procedures and insufficient mobile spectrum, compounded by the poor condition of fixed-line networks which has held back the development of fixed-line internet services and rendered such services among the most expensive globally. The fixed-line incumbent Onatel is now 61%-owned by Maroc Telecom. It operates the country's fixed-line network as well as one of the three mobile networks, Telmob.
Mobile telephony has experienced strong growth since competition was introduced in 2000. There has been some fluidity in ownership, with Zain having been acquired by Bharti Airtel before being sold on to Orange Group in 2016. Although market penetration remains below the African average, is continues to grow steadily.
Onatel's FasoNet is the country's leading internet service provider, offering DSL and EV-DO services. Internet penetration is extremely low, exacerbated by the high cost of connectivity despite price cuts introduced since 2011 in the wake of improved international bandwidth via fibre links through adjacent countries. These links provide access to the region's international submarine cables. Although about 50 ISPs have been licensed, only three compete with FasoNet, and collectively these have fewer than 1,000 subscribers.
As a result of poor fixed-line infrastructure the mobile operators have become significant players in the internet sector, accounting for most connections.
Burkina Faso joins G5 Sahel countries to eliminate roaming fees by 2019;
Maroc Telecom increases its stake in Onatel to 61%;
Government prepares to amend legislation to improve regulations and the legal framework governing the telecom sector;
SES Networks renews contract to provide satellite services for government agencies;
Government proposes technology-neutral licences to boost mobile broadband connectivity;
Huawei starts phase one of a new national fibre backbone project;
Government progresses with XOF23.6 billion project to provide metropolitan fibre-optic infrastructure;
Vodafone Wholesale and Huawei complete cable to Ghanaian border;
International internet bandwidth increases to 17.7Gb/s;
Report update includes the regulator's annual reports and market statistical data to 2017, telcos' financial and operating data to Q3 2018, recent market developments.
Companies mentioned in this report:
Onatel, Telmob, Bharti Airtel (Zain, Celtel), Orange Burkina Faso, Moov (Telecel, Etisalat), FasoNet, ZCP, Delgi, Cenatrin, CFAO Technologies, River Telecom, Net Access, Maroc Telecom, Vivendi.