Caribbean - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses


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

Caribbean - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

Given the relative lack of economic diversity within the Caribbean, the telecoms sector accounts for a higher proportion of GDP in most markets in the region than is common elsewhere. In the long-term the sector remains one of steady growth, particularly in the mobile telephony and data segments. However, such is the dependence on tourism for many of the islands states that lockdowns associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, both within the Caribbean and among visitor countries, have had a dramatic effect on local economies. This has had a knock-on effect on consumer spending for telecom services and on operator revenue.

Although there are a number of smaller players operating, Digicel Group and Liberty Latin America are the dominant providers, with local business units spanning the region. Their fixed-line and mobile infrastructure assets have cemented their position as full-service providers. Competition between them has encouraged investments to expand the reach of fibre networks and LTE, while there is also goring interest in 5G infrastructure from Liberty's mobile unit Flow.

Digicel has invested widely in fibre infrastructure, though at the expense of Group free-cash flow at a time when the Group has amassed considerable debt. As of mid-2020, the Group's survival rests on its success in renegotiating loans of about $4.3 billion due by the end of 2022.

There have been ongoing changes in telecoms regulations across the region, with national regulators focussed on efforts to improve competition and facilitate investment.

BuddeComm notes that the outbreak of the Coronavirus in 2020 is having a significant impact on production and supply chains globally. During the coming year the telecoms sector to various degrees is likely to experience a downturn in mobile device production, while it may also be difficult for network operators to manage workflows when maintaining and upgrading existing infrastructure. Overall progress towards 5G may be postponed or slowed down in some countries.

On the consumer side, spending on telecoms services and devices is under pressure from the financial effect of large-scale job losses and the consequent restriction on disposable incomes. However, the crucial nature of telecom services, both for general communication as well as a tool for home-working, will offset such pressures. In many markets the net effect should be a steady though reduced increased in subscriber growth.

Although it is challenging to predict and interpret the long-term impacts of the crisis as it develops, these have been acknowledged in the industry forecasts contained in this report.

The report also covers the responses of the telecom operators as well as government agencies and regulators as they react to the crisis to ensure that citizens can continue to make optimum use of telecom services. This can be reflected in subsidy schemes and the promotion of tele-health and tele-education, among other solutions.

Key developments:

Digicel Group seeking to refinance debts;
Bahamas regulator imposes new wholesale broadband access regime on BTC and Cable Bahamas, issues revised National Spectrum Plan;
Bermudan regulator approves three new telecom licenses;
US government completes second subsea cable, linking Puerto Rico with Guantanamo Bay Naval Base;
Antigua government invests EC$80 million to improve state-owned telco's market competitiveness;
New telecom regulator formed for Cayman Islands;
Digicel Jamaica launches MyCash m-banking service;
Haiti sets up digital incubator to foster digital economy growth;
Report update includes regulators' annual reports and market updates, operator data to Q1 2020, ITU's market data, Telecom Maturity Index charts and analyses, assessment of the global impact of COVID-19 on the telecoms sector, recent market developments.

Companies mentioned in this report:

Cable & Wireless, LIME, Flow, Liberty Global, Digicel Group, Orange Caraïbes, United Telecommunications Services (UTS), KeyTech, Puerto Rico Telephone Company, América Móvil, AT&T, Liberty Cablevision; OneLink Communications; T-Mobile; Open Mobile; Sprint PCS; Choice Cable


  • Executive Summary
  • Caribbean Market Comparison
    • MOBILE AND MOBILE BROADBAND PENETRATION
    • FIXED AND MOBILE BROADBAND PENETRATION
    • TMI VERSUS GDP
  • COVID-19 and its impact on the telecom sector
    • ECONOMIC CONSIDERATIONS AND RESPONSES
    • MOBILE DEVICES
    • SUBSCRIBERS
    • INFRASTRUCTURE
  • Telecommunications market
    • OVERVIEW
  • Regulatory environment
    • ORGANISATION OF EASTERN CARIBBEAN STATES (OECS)
    • EASTERN CARIBBEAN TELECOMMUNICATIONS AUTHORITY (ECTEL)
    • CARIBBEAN COMMUNITY (CARICOM)
    • ASSOCIATION OF CARIBBEAN STATES (ACS)
    • TELECOM SECTOR LIBERALISATION
    • CARIBBEAN ASSOCIATION OF NATIONAL TELECOMMUNICATION ORGANISATIONS (CANTO)
  • Mobile market
    • OVERVIEW
  • Fixed-line broadband market
  • Major telecom operators in the Caribbean
    • FLOW (CABLE & WIRELESS/LIBERTY GLOBAL)
      • Table Change in CWC's residential revenue by type - 2018 - 2020
      • Table Growth in the number of CWC's fixed-line RGUs by sector - 2009 - 2020
      • Table Growth in the number of CWC's mobile subscribers - 2009 - 2020
    • DIGICEL
      • Review of Digicel's markets
      • Digicel's financial performance
      • Restructuring -2020
  • Telecommunications infrastructure
    • SUBMARINE CABLE SYSTEMS
  • Anguilla
  • Antigua and Barbuda
    • Table Country data Antigua and Barbuda - 2020 (e)
    • Table Antigua and Barbuda subscribers by sector- 2010 - 2020
    • Table Antigua and Barbuda penetration by sector - 2010 - 2020
    • MOBILE MARKET
      • Table Antigua and Barbuda active mobile broadband subscribers - 2012 - 2020
  • Aruba
    • Table Country data Aruba - 2020 (e)
  • Bahamas
    • Table Country data Bahamas - 2020 (e)
    • Table Bahamas - Change in telecom sector revenue - 2014 - 2019
    • REGULATORY MEASURES
      • Access
      • National Spectrum Plan 2020-2023
    • MARKET COMPETITION
    • FIXED-LINE
      • Table Bahamas - Decline in fixed lines in service and penetration - 2010 - 2020
    • MOBILE
      • Table Bahamas - Mobile subscribers and penetration - 2009 - 2020
      • Table Bahamas - Active mobile broadband subscribers and penetration - 2012 - 2020
      • Second and third mobile licenses
    • BROADBAND
      • Table Bahamas - Fixed-line broadband subscribers and penetration - 2010 - 2020
    • SUBMARINE CABLES
  • Barbados
    • Table Country data Barbados - 2020 (e)
    • MARKET BACKGROUND
      • Table Barbados - Fixed telephony subscriptions and penetration - 2010 - 2020
    • MOBILE
      • Table Barbados - Mobile subscribers and penetration - 2010 - 2020
      • Table Barbados - Active mobile broadband subscribers and penetration - 2012 - 2020
    • BROADBAND
      • Table Barbados - Fixed-line broadband subscribers and penetration - 2010 - 2020
  • Bermuda
    • Table Country data Bermuda - 2020 (e)
    • MARKET BACKGROUND
      • Table One Communications financial data - 2010 - 2019
    • MOBILE
    • BROADBAND
      • Table Bermuda - Change in the number of subscribers by sector- 2010 - 2020
      • Table Bermuda - Change in penetration of services by sector - 2010 - 2020
    • SMART GRIDS
  • British Virgin Islands
    • Table BVI - Change in the number of subscribers by sector- 2010 - 2020
    • Table BVI - Change in penetration of services by sector - 2010 - 2020
    • MOBILE MARKET
      • Table BVI active mobile broadband subscribers and penetration - 2013 - 2020
  • Cayman Islands
    • Table Cayman Islands - Change in the number of subscribers - 2010 - 2020
    • Table Cayman Islands - Change in penetration by service - 2010 - 2020
    • Table Cayman Island telecom and broadcasting revenue - 2008 - 2017
    • MOBILE NETWORKS:
  • Dominica
    • Table Country data Dominica - 2020 (e)
    • Table Dominica - Change in the number of subscribers by sector- 2010 - 2020
    • Table Dominica - Change in penetration of services by sector - 2010 - 2020
    • MOBILE
      • Table Dominica - Active mobile broadband subscribers - 2014 - 2020
  • Grenada
    • Table Country data Grenada - 2020 (e)
    • Table Granada - Change in the number of subscribers by sector- 2010 - 2020
    • Table Granada - Change in penetration of services by sector - 2010 - 2020
    • Table Granada - Active mobile broadband subscribers - 2013 - 2020
  • Guadeloupe
  • Martinique
  • Montserrat
  • Netherlands Antilles
  • St Kitts and Nevis
    • Table Country data St Kitts and Nevis - 2020 (e)
    • Table St Kitts and Nevis - Change in subscriber numbers by sector- 2010 - 2020
    • Table St Kitts and Nevis - Change in penetration of services by sector - 2010 - 2020
    • Table St Kitts and Nevis active mobile broadband subscribers - 2013 - 2020
  • St Lucia
    • Table Country data St Lucia - 2020 (e)
    • Table St Lucia - Change in subscriber numbers by sector- 2010 - 2020
    • Table St Lucia - Change in penetration of services by sector - 2010 - 2020
    • MOBILE
      • Table St Lucia active mobile broadband subscribers - 2013 - 2020
  • St Vincent and the Grenadines
    • Table Country data St Vincent and the Grenadines - 2020 (e)
    • Table St Vincent and the Grenadines - Change in subscribers by sector - 2010 - 2020
    • Table St Vincent and the Grenadines - Change in service penetration - 2010 - 2020
    • Table St Vincent and the Grenadines active mobile broadband subscribers - 2014 2020
  • Trinidad and Tobago
    • Table Country data Trinidad & Tobago - 2020 (e)
    • Table Trinidad & Tobago telecom revenue by service - 2013 - 2019
    • Table Trinidad & Tobago telecom subscribers by service - 2010 - 2019
    • Table Trinidad & Tobago penetration by sector - 2012 - 2019
    • Table Trinidad & Tobago ARPU by service (TT$) - 2009 - 2019
    • FIXED-LINE
    • MOBILE
      • Table Trinidad & Tobago active mobile broadband penetration - 2010 - 2019
  • Turks and Caicos
  • United States Virgin Islands
  • Appendix - Historic data
    • Table Historic - CWC financial data (Caribbean) - 2010 - 2017
    • Table Historic - CWC revenue by sector - 2010 - 2017
    • Table Historic - Digicel revenue by operating segment - 2013 - 2015
    • Table Historic - Digicel financial statistics - 2010 - 2015
    • Table Historic - Digicel revenue by geographic sector ($ million) - 2014 - 2015
    • Table Historic - Anguilla communications sector revenue - 2008 - 2013
    • Table Historic - Anguilla subscribers by service - 2005 - 2015
    • Table Historic - Antigua and Barbuda fixed-line broadband subscribers - 2005 - 2009
    • Table Historic - Antigua and Barbuda fixed-telephony lines in service - 2005 - 2009
    • Table Historic - Antigua and Barbuda mobile subscribers and penetration - 2000 - 2009
    • Table Historic - Aruba fixed-line telephony subscribers and penetration - 2001 - 2015
    • Table Historic - Aruba fixed-line broadband subscribers - 2003 - 2015
    • Table Historic - Aruba mobile subscribers and penetration - 2000 - 2015
    • Table Historic - Bahamas fixed lines in services and penetration - 2000 - 2009
    • Table Historic - Bahamas fixed-line broadband subscribers and penetration - 2001 2009
    • Table Historic - Bahamas mobile subscribers and penetration - 2000 - 2009
    • Table Historic - Barbados fixed telephony subscriptions and penetration - 2005 - 2009
    • Table Historic - Barbados mobile subscribers and penetration - 2000 - 2009
    • Table Historic - Barbados fixed-line broadband subscribers and penetration - 2005 2009
    • Table Historic - - Barbados - Fixed-line broadband subscribers and penetration - 2005 2009
    • Table Historic - Bermuda mobile subscribers and penetration - 2000 - 2009
    • Table Historic - Bermuda fixed lines in services - 2003 - 2009
    • Table Historic - Bermuda active mobile subscribers and penetration - 2014 - 2017
    • Table Historic - Bermuda fixed-line broadband subscribers - 2005 - 2009
    • Table Historic - BVI fixed telephony subscriptions and penetration - 2005 - 2009
    • Table Historic - BVI revenue from telecoms and ICT services - 2009 - 2014
    • Table Historic - BVI mobile subscribers and penetration - 2007 - 2009
    • Table Historic - Cayman Island subscribers by service - 2005 - 2009
    • Table Cayman Island penetration by service - 2005 - 2009
    • Table Historic - Dominica communications sector revenue - 2008 - 2013
    • Table Historic - Dominica fixed broadband subscribers - 2003 - 2009
    • Table Historic - Dominica fixed lines in service - 2000 - 2009
    • Table Historic - Dominica mobile subscribers - 2000 - 2009
    • Table Historic - Grenada communications sector revenue - 2008 - 2013
    • Table Historic - Grenada fixed broadband subscribers - 2005 - 2009
    • Table Historic - Grenada fixed lines in service - 2000 - 2009
    • Table Grenada mobile subscribers - 2000 - 2018
    • Table Historic - Montserrat communications sector revenue - 2008 - 2013
    • Table Historic - Netherlands Antilles fixed lines in service - 2000 - 2014
    • Table St Kitts and Nevis communications sector revenue - 2008 - 2013
    • Table Historic - St Kitts and Nevis fixed broadband subscribers - 2002 - 2009
    • Table Historic - St Kitts and Nevis mobile subscribers - 2000 - 2009
    • Table Historic - St Kitts and Nevis fixed-lines in service and penetration - 2000 - 2009
    • Table Historic - St Lucia communications sector revenue - 2008 - 2013
    • Table Historic - St Lucia fixed broadband subscribers - 2003 - 2009
    • Table Historic - St Lucia fixed telephony subscribers - 2006 - 2009
    • Table Historic - St Lucia mobile subscribers - 2000 - 2009
    • Table Historic - St Vincent and the Grenadines communications sector revenue - 2008 2013
    • Table Historic - St Vincent and the Grenadines fixed telephony subscribers - 2003 2009
    • Table Historic - St Vincent and the Grenadines fixed broadband subscribers - 2003 2009
    • Table Historic - St Vincent and the Grenadines mobile subscribers - 2000 - 2009
  • Glossary of abbreviations
  • Related reports

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