Guinea - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses
Guinea's telecommunications sector was given a tremendous boost following the market entry of MTN Group and Orange Group. During the following years the number of subscribers grew strongly while revenue also increased steadily. The mobile market by 2006 included four competing networks, and though the number of subscribers dipped slightly in 2016 this was due to the removal of dormant SIM cards among operators. The debt-stricken incumbent fixed-line operator Sotelgui operated its Lagui mobile unit before it closed down in late 2012. Sotelgui was declared bankrupt in 2013, and though there have been several announcements regarding its revival the government in late 2017 confirmed that there was no prospect of its return without a public private partnership to inject substantial cash and equip the company with skilled management. The heavily indebted fourth mobile player Intercel was obliged to close down its network in late 2018.
Broadband services are still very limited and expensive. The landing of the first international fibre optic submarine cable in 2012, and the setting up of an IXP in mid-2013, has gone some way to developing the nascent broadband market develop by reducing the cost of internet bandwidth and improving the reliability of infrastructure. A National Backbone Network is nearing completion, connecting administrative centres across the country, though in practice almost all internet connectivity will remain via mobile infrastructure.
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.
Orange secures ten-year mobile licence;
Intercel shut down by the government;
National fibre backbone nears completion;
Guinea and Mali sign agreement to abolish roaming and harmonize interconnection rates;
Mobile smartphones and apps deployed to tackle outbreaks of disease;
Mobile Money services gain strong customer take-up;
MTN signs management services contract with Huawei;
Cellcom Guinea launches 3G+ services;
Report update includes the regulators annual report for 2017, market data to September 2018, operator data to Q3 2018, 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:
Société des Télécommunications de Guinée (Sotelgui), MTN (Areeba, Investcom), Orange (Spacetel), Intercel (Télécel Guinea), Cellcom Guinee, MiriNet (Afribone), ETI, Universal Communication (DiscoveryTel), Ristel, Afripa Telecom, Alternet Systems, Broad Telecom, Soguicis, Thucatel, Telekom Malaysia
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