Colombia - Telecom Market Trends, Key Statistics and Regulatory Overview
Colombia's telecom infrastructure is reasonably well developed in the main business centres, where service availability is relatively high for Latin America. Facilities are quite poor, however, in small urban centres and rural areas.
The main regulatory instruments in the telecom sector are the Convergence Decree and the ICT Law. The first sets out the rules attached to the Convergence Licence. It also requires telcos with dominant market position to provide wholesale services and unbundling. The second promotes universal access, ensures free competition and the efficient use of infrastructure and spectrum, and above all, it strengthens consumer protection.
The fastest growing sectors in coming years will be 3G and 4G mobile services, and fixed broadband. The fixed-line sector will continue to stagnate or contract. The mobile telephony sector appears to be facing early market saturation: many of the wealthier citizens already have two or more mobile phones, while a large percentage of the population cannot afford even one.
Colombia is included in a group of up-and-coming nations (dubbed CIVETS) touted as hot markets because of their large potential returns. Hoping to attract tourism and foreign investment, the Colombian government is trying to shake off the country's image as a trouble spot. In fact, according to some economic analysts, Colombia is becoming the hidden investment gem of South America.
This report provides an overview of Colombia's telecom market and regulatory environment, accompanied by statistical data, analyses, and outlook.
Colombia continuing to show showing strong GDP growth; municipally owned ETB and Emcali struggle to make gains; UNE-EPM merger with Tigo approved.
Companies covered in this report include:
Movistar, Claro (Telmex/Comcel), UNE-EPM, ETB, Emcali, Tigo, Avantel.