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2006 Latin America Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband in Mexico and the Caribbean


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

The region comprising the Caribbean Sea and its numerous islands is commonly known as the Caribbean. It lies south of the Gulf of Mexico, covering an area of about 2,754,000km². For many years, it was referred to as the West Indies; however, the name Caribbean has been universally adopted since the early 20th century. Varying considerably in size, the Caribbean islands form a wide arc between Florida in the north and Venezuela in the south, as well as a barrier between the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean.

Caribbean Countries: Small Island Nations: These countries include Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, Aruba, Bahamas, Barbados, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Montserrat, Netherlands Antilles, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad & Tobago, Turks & Caicos Islands, and the US Virgin Islands. Despite the small markets in terms of population, telecommunications has become one of the Caribbean’s major growth industries. Liberalisation agreements have been reached in most countries, and Cable and Wireless (C&W), historically the monopoly provider of telephone services in many Caribbean markets, is facing growing competition, especially in the mobile sector, where Mossel-owned Digicel has made a meteoric ascent. From 2001, when it first launched GSM services in Jamaica, it has grown into a pan-regional mobile provider, with operations in 15 Caribbean nations.

Cuba: The country occupies the very last place in Latin America for both mobile phone and Internet penetration, and is fifth from the last in fixed-line teledensity. The government has blamed the embargo for the country’s poor telecom development, as the difficult relationship with the USA prevented the implementation of submarine fibre-optic cables; thus, Cuba has had to rely almost exclusively on satellites for international connectivity. But Cubans cannot legally buy a computer or subscribe to an ISP without having a government permit. Mobile rates are prohibitive for the vast majority of Cubans. Etecsa, controlled 73% by the government and 27% by Telecom Italia, holds a monopoly in both fixed and mobile services. It offers GSM, TDMA, and AMPS services through its subsidiary Cubacel.

Dominican Republic: Telecommunications in the Dominican Republic is one of the fastest growing and most competitive industry sectors. Fixed-line teledensity (around 10%) is, however, well below the Latin American average, the country’s fixed line network having been repeatedly destroyed by violent hurricanes. Mobile penetration, on the other hand, is more than three times higher than fixed-line teledensity, and is about average for Latin America. Verizon Dominicana is the dominant provider of fixed-line and mobile telephony, as well as Internet services. The market for high-speed Internet is still young and there is enormous potential for growth. The location of the Dominican Republic ensures fairly high Internet speeds. The telephone cable that connects Europe to the USA runs close by and allows for excellent connectivity. However, Internet uptake is relatively low, and user penetration, at around 9%, is below average for Latin America.

Haiti: Fixed-line teledensity in Haiti is the lowest in Latin America, and mobile penetration is the second lowest after Cuba. Political unrest has severely affected investments in a country where most people have no electricity, telephones, or running water. Fixed-line services are provided by state-owned monopoly operator Teleco, which is inefficient and poorly managed. Mobile telephony, instead, is open to competition. Digicel has become the fourth mobile operator, entering the market in 2006. Although only affordable by the wealthy, mobile phones overtook fixed lines in service in 2002. There are now more than twice as many mobile customers as there are fixed-line subscribers, even though mobile penetration is only around 4%. Internet access is also open to competition. WLL and VoIP are being used to supplement the shortage of fixed lines.

Jamaica: The island has a fairly advanced telecom infrastructure, containing a hybrid mix of fixed-line and wireless technologies. Fixed-line teledensity, however, is one of the lowest in the Caribbean, although it is about average for the Latin American region as a whole. Despite liberalisation and the award of numerous licences, Cable & Wireless Jamaica (C&WJ) continues to dominate the Jamaican fixed-line telecom scene. Mobile telephony, on the other hand, has experienced a remarkable boom since the market was opened to competition, so much so that there are about six mobile phones for every fixed line in service. The mobile market is served by three digital networks. Internet access on the island is still predominantly narrowband, but the number of broadband subscribers is growing rapidly. C&WJ provides the only backbone connection to the Internet. This has resulted in a skewed Internet bandwidth-pricing regime.

Mexico: The Mexican telecom industry is developing rapidly and has enormous growth potential, making it one of the most interesting telecom markets in the world. There have, however, been complaints that, despite liberalisation, basic telephony is still almost a monopoly, with Teléfonos de Mexico (Telmex) holding around 94% of all lines in service. Telmex’s sister company América Móvil dominates the mobile sector through its unit Telcel, which has around 80% of the market. Overall teledensity stands at 18%, which is about average for Latin America, but there are huge disparities between urban and rural areas, ranging from 41% teledensity in the Federal District, to 5% in the poor, mainly Indian state of Chiapas. VoIP has gained huge popularity, especially with small and medium sized businesses. Several companies offer VoIP services, although providers have the same licensing requirements as other voice carriers, and many have been shut down for operating illegally. Broadband, especially ADSL, is one of the fastest growing telecom markets in Mexico. The shift from dial-up to broadband became apparent in 2005, when dial-up accounts started to decrease, while broadband soared by around 122%.

Puerto Rico: With one of the most advanced and fastest-growing telecom markets in the region, Puerto Rico is among the leading countries in Latin America in terms of both fixed-line and mobile penetration. Mobile telephony and the Internet are the most dynamic sectors in the telecom industry, while fixed lines are losing customers to mobility and broadband. The local call market still remains heavily dominated by the Puerto Rico Telephone Company (PRTC). Centennial de Puerto Rico is PRTC’s main competitor, but it holds a negligible share of the local market, focusing instead on broadband, cable TV and mobile services. The long-distance market, on the other hand, is extremely competitive, and the island’s low long-distance call rates are attributed to market competition. With a flourishing VoIP business, a booming broadband market, and a healthy cable TV sector, Puerto Rico is a promising target for investments in convergence strategies such as triple play.

This report provides information on Mexico and the Caribbean Countries (Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Jamaica, Puerto Rico and small island nations). Each country has its own chapter and covers the following subjects.

  • Key Statistics
  • Market Overview
  • Regulatory Environment
  • Fixed Network Operators
  • Telecom Infrastructure
  • Data Market
  • Internet
  • Broadband
  • E-services
  • Mobile Market Overview
  • Mobile Operators
  • Broadcasting


1. CARIBBEAN SMALL ISLAND NATIONS


1.1 Telecommunications market
1.1.1 Overview
1.2 Regulatory environment
1.2.1 Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS)
1.2.2 Eastern Caribbean Telecommunications Authority (ECTEL)
1.2.3 Telecom sector liberalisation
1.3 Major telecom operators in the Caribbean
1.3.1 Cable & Wireless
1.3.2 Digicel
1.4 Telecommunications infrastructure
1.4.1 National telecom network
1.4.2 International infrastructure
1.5 Internet and broadband market
1.5.1 Overview of the Internet and broadband markets
1.6 Mobile communications
1.6.1 Overview of mobile markets
1.6.2 Satellite mobile
1.7 Country overviews
1.7.1 Anguilla
1.7.2 Antigua & Barbuda
1.7.3 Aruba
1.7.4 Bahamas
1.7.5 Barbados
1.7.6 Bermuda
1.7.7 British Virgin Islands
1.7.8 Cayman Islands
1.7.9 Dominica
1.7.10 Grenada
1.7.11 Guadeloupe
1.7.12 Martinique
1.7.13 Montserrat
1.7.14 Netherlands Antilles
1.7.15 St Kitts & Nevis
1.7.16 St Lucia
1.7.17 St Vincent & the Grenadines
1.7.18 Trinidad & Tobago
1.7.19 Turks & Caicos
1.7.20 United States Virgin Islands

2. CUBA


2.1 Key statistics
2.2 Telecommunications market
2.2.1 Overview of Cuba’s telecom market
2.3 Regulatory environment
2.3.1 Background
2.3.2 Regulatory authority
2.3.3 Privatisation
2.4 Fixed network operator in Cuba
2.4.1 Empresa de Telecomunicaciones del Cuba SA (Etecsa)
2.5 Telecommunications infrastructure
2.5.1 National telecom network
2.5.2 International infrastructure
2.6 Internet market
2.6.1 Overview
2.7 Mobile communications
2.7.1 Overview of Cuba’s mobile market
2.7.2 Major mobile operators

3. DOMINICAN REPUBLIC


3.1 Key statistics
3.2 Telecommunications market
3.2.1 Overview of the Dominican Republic’s telecom market
3.3 Regulatory environment
3.3.1 Background
3.3.2 Regulatory authority
3.3.3 Telecom sector liberalisation in the Dominican Republic
3.3.4 Privatisation of Codetel (now Verizon Dominicana)
3.3.5 Foreign investment
3.4 Fixed network operators in the Dominican Republic
3.4.1 Overview of operators
3.4.2 Verizon Dominicana (formerly Codetel)
3.4.3 Tricom
3.4.4 Centennial Dominicana
3.4.5 Turitel SA
3.4.6 Economitel
3.5 Telecommunications infrastructure
3.5.1 National telecom network
3.5.2 International infrastructure
3.5.3 Infrastructure developments
3.6 Internet market
3.6.1 Internet statistics
3.7 Broadband market
3.7.1 Overview
3.7.2 Cable modems
3.7.3 Asymmetrical Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL)
3.7.4 Wireless broadband
3.8 Convergence
3.8.1 Overview of media convergence
3.8.2 Pay TV
3.9 Mobile communications
3.9.1 Overview of the Dominican Republic’s mobile market
3.9.2 Major mobile operators
3.9.3 Mobile voice services
3.9.4 Mobile data services

4. HAITI


4.1 Key statistics
4.2 Telecommunications market
4.2.1 Overview of Haiti’s telecom market
4.3 Regulatory environment
4.3.1 Regulatory authority
4.3.2 Telecom sector liberalisation in Haiti
4.3.3 Privatisation
4.4 Major fixed network operator in Haiti
4.4.1 Telecommunications D’Haiti (Teleco)
4.5 Telecommunications infrastructure
4.5.1 National telecom network
4.5.2 International infrastructure
4.6 Internet market
4.6.1 Overview
4.6.2 ISP market
4.6.3 Broadband
4.7 Convergence
4.7.1 Overview of media convergence
4.7.2 Cable TV
4.7.3 Satellite TV
4.8 Mobile communications
4.8.1 Overview of Haiti’s mobile market
4.8.2 Major mobile operators

5. JAMAICA


5.1 Key statistics
5.2 Telecommunications market
5.2.1 Overview of Jamaica’s telecom market
5.3 Regulatory environment
5.3.1 Background
5.3.2 Regulatory authorities
5.3.3 Privatisation of Telecommunications of Jamaica (TOJ)
5.3.4 Telecom sector liberalisation in Jamaica
5.3.5 Interconnect
5.3.6 Access
5.4 Fixed network operators in Jamaica
5.4.1 Overview of operators
5.4.2 Cable & Wireless Jamaica
5.4.3 GoTel Communications Ltd
5.5 Telecommunications infrastructure
5.5.1 National telecom network
5.5.2 International infrastructure
5.5.3 Infrastructure developments
5.6 Internet market
5.6.1 Overview
5.7 Broadband market
5.7.1 Overview
5.8 Convergence
5.8.1 Overview of media convergence
5.8.2 Cable TV
5.9 Mobile communications
5.9.1 Overview of Jamaica’s mobile market
5.9.2 Major mobile operators

6. MEXICO


6.1 Key statistics
6.2 Telecommunications market
6.2.1 Overview of Mexico’s telecom market
6.2.2 Market analysis - 2005
6.3 Regulatory environment
6.3.1 Background
6.3.2 Regulatory authorities
6.3.3 Telecom sector liberalisation in Mexico
6.3.4 Privatisation of Telmex
6.3.5 Interconnect
6.3.6 Settlement rates and resale
6.3.7 Calling-Party-Pays
6.4 Fixed network operators in Mexico
6.4.1 Market overview
6.4.2 Teléfonos de México (Telmex)
6.4.3 Avantel
6.4.4 Alestra
6.4.5 Axtel
6.4.6 Maxcom
6.4.7 Marcatel
6.4.8 Iusatel
6.4.9 Protel
6.4.10 Megacable
6.4.11 Miditel (suspended)
6.5 Telecommunications infrastructure
6.5.1 National telecom network
6.5.2 International infrastructure
6.5.3 Infrastructure developments
6.6 Internet market
6.6.1 Overview of the Internet in Mexico
6.6.2 ISP market
6.7 Broadband market
6.7.1 Overview
6.7.2 ADSL
6.7.3 Cable modems
6.7.4 Wireless broadband
6.8 Convergence
6.8.1 Overview of media convergence
6.8.2 Triple play models
6.8.3 Pay TV
6.8.4 Interactive TV
6.8.5 Digital Terrestrial TV
6.9 Mobile communications
6.9.1 Overview of Mexico’s mobile market
6.9.2 Regulatory issues
6.9.3 Mobile technologies
6.9.4 Major mobile operators
6.9.5 Mobile voice services in Mexico
6.9.6 Mobile data services
6.9.7 Mobile applications

7. PUERTO RICO


7.1 Key statistics
7.2 Telecommunications market
7.2.1 Overview of Puerto Rico’s telecom market
7.3 Regulatory environment
7.3.1 Background
7.3.2 Regulatory authority
7.3.3 Universal service fund
7.3.4 Number portability
7.3.5 Privatisation of PRTC
7.4 Fixed network operators in Puerto Rico
7.4.1 Introduction
7.4.2 Puerto Rico Telephone Company (PRTC)
7.4.3 Centennial de Puerto Rico (CPR)
7.4.4 Telefónica Larga Distancia de Puerto Rico (TDL)
7.5 Telecommunications infrastructure
7.5.1 National telecom network
7.5.2 International infrastructure
7.5.3 Infrastructure developments
7.6 Internet market
7.6.1 Internet statistics
7.7 Broadband market
7.7.1 Overview
7.7.2 Cable modems
7.7.3 Digital Subscriber Line (DSL)
7.8 Convergence
7.8.1 Overview of media convergence
7.8.2 Triple play models
7.8.3 Cable TV
7.8.4 Satellite TV
7.9 Mobile communications
7.9.1 Overview of Puerto Rico’s mobile market
7.9.2 Mobile technologies
7.9.3 Major mobile operators
7.9.4 Mobile voice services

8. GLOSSARY OF ABBREVIATIONS


Exhibit 1 - Island territories of the Caribbean
Exhibit 2 - Telecom privatisation and liberalisation in the Caribbean
Exhibit 3 - Digicel’s Caribbean operations - February 2006
Exhibit 4 - Major submarine cable networks serving the Caribbean region
Exhibit 5 - Individual telecom licences granted in Grenada
Exhibit 6 - Companies offering Internet services in Cuba - 2003
Exhibit 7 - Major submarine cable networks serving the Dominican Republic
Exhibit 8 - Major submarine cable networks serving Jamaica
Exhibit 9 - Fixed-line local telephony licence holders - November 2005
Exhibit 10 - Fixed-wireless local telephony licence holders - November 2005
Exhibit 11 - Long-distance licence holders - November 2005
Exhibit 12 - Telmex at a glance
Exhibit 13 - Major submarine cable networks in Latin America
Exhibit 14 - Mobile telephone regions
Exhibit 15 - Licences of mobile operators
Exhibit 16 - Telefónica acquisitions: Bajacel, Movitel, Norcel, Cedetel and Pegaso
Exhibit 17 - Major submarine cable networks serving Puerto Rico


Table 1 - Caribbean countries - fixed lines in service and teledensity - 2004
Table 2 - Caribbean countries - Internet users, penetration and host computers - 2004
Table 3 - Caribbean countries - mobile subscribers and penetration - June 2005
Table 4 - Anguilla - country statistics - 2005
Table 5 - Antigua & Barbuda - country statistics - 2005
Table 6 - Aruba - country statistics - 2005
Table 7 - Bahamas - country statistics - 2005
Table 8 - Barbados - country statistics - 2005
Table 9 - Bermuda - country statistics - 2005
Table 10 - British Virgin Islands - country statistics - 2005
Table 11 - Cayman Islands - country statistics - 2005
Table 12 - Dominica - country statistics - 2005
Table 13 - Grenada - country statistics - 2005
Table 14 - Guadeloupe - country statistics - 2005
Table 15 - Martinique - country statistics - 2005
Table 16 - Montserrat - country statistics - 2005
Table 17 - Netherlands Antilles - country statistics - 2005
Table 18 - St Kitts & Nevis - country statistics - 2005
Table 19 - St Lucia - country statistics - 2005
Table 20 - St Vincent & the Grenadines - country statistics - 2005
Table 21 - Trinidad & Tobago - country statistics - 2005
Table 22 - Turks & Caicos - country statistics - 2005
Table 23 - United States Virgin Islands - country statistics - 2004
Table 24 - Country statistics Cuba - 2005
Table 25 - Telephone network statistics - 2004
Table 26 - Internet provider statistics - 2004
Table 27 - Internet user statistics - 2004
Table 28 - Mobile statistics - June 2005
Table 29 - National telecommunications authorities
Table 30 - Fixed lines in service, annual change and teledensity - 1996 - 2004
Table 31 - Internet users, annual change and user penetration - 1996 - 2004
Table 32 - Internet host computers and annual change - 1996 - 2004
Table 33 - Mobile subscribers, annual change and penetration - 1996 - 2005
Table 34 - Country statistics Dominican Republic - 2004
Table 35 - Telephone network statistics - September 2005
Table 36 - Internet provider statistics - 2004
Table 37 - Internet user statistics - 2004
Table 38 - Mobile statistics - September 2005
Table 39 - National telecommunications authorities
Table 40 - Verizon Dominicana fixed lines in service and annual change - 1996 - 2004
Table 41 - Tricom fixed lines in service and annual change - 1998 - 2005
Table 42 - Fixed lines in service, annual change and teledensity - 1996 - 2005
Table 43 - Public phones and annual change - 1996 - 2005
Table 44 - Data communications statistics - 2001 - 2005
Table 45 - WLL lines in service and annual change - 1999 - 2005
Table 46 - Internet users, annual change and user penetration - 1998 - 2004
Table 47 - Internet subscribers, annual change and subscriber penetration - 1996 - 2005
Table 48 - Internet host computers and annual change - 1994 - 2004
Table 49 - Residential and corporate DSL subscribers - 2004 - 2005
Table 50 - Mobile subscribers by operator, technology and annual change - September 2005
Table 51 - Mobile subscribers, annual change and penetration - 1996 - 2005
Table 52 - Mobile operators market share - 2003 - 2005
Table 53 - Verizon - mobile subscribers and annual change - 1997 - 2005
Table 54 - Orange - mobile subscribers and annual change - 2000 - 2005
Table 55 - Tricom - mobile subscribers and annual change - 1998 - 2005
Table 56 - Postpaid/prepaid ratio - 2001 - 2005
Table 57 - Country statistics Haiti - 2005
Table 58 - Telephone network statistics - 2004
Table 59 - Internet provider statistics - 2004
Table 60 - Internet user statistics - 2004
Table 61 - Mobile statistics - June 2005
Table 62 - National telecommunications authorities
Table 63 - Fixed lines in service, annual change and teledensity - 1998 - 2004
Table 64 - Internet users, annual change and user penetration - 1998 - 2004
Table 65 - Internet host computers and annual change - 1996 - 2004
Table 66 - Mobile subscribers, annual change and penetration - 1998 - 2005
Table 67 - Country statistics Jamaica - 2004
Table 68 - Telephone network statistics - March 2005
Table 69 - Internet provider statistics - June 2005
Table 70 - Internet user statistics - 2004
Table 71 - Mobile statistics - September 2005
Table 72 - National telecommunications authorities
Table 73 - Licences issued - 2005
Table 74 - Fixed lines in service, annual change and teledensity - 1996 - 2005
Table 75 - Internet users annual change and user penetration - 1996 - 2004
Table 76 - Internet host computers and annual change - 1996 - 2004
Table 77 - Mobile subscribers by operator - September 2005
Table 78 - Mobile subscribers, annual change and penetration - 1997 - 2005
Table 79 - Mobile market share - 2003 - 2005
Table 80 - Country statistics Mexico - 2005
Table 81 - Telecom revenue and investment statistics - 2005
Table 82 - Telephone network statistics - September 2005
Table 83 - Internet provider statistics - 2005
Table 84 - Internet user statistics - 2005
Table 85 - Broadband statistics - 2005
Table 86 - Mobile statistics - September 2005
Table 87 - National telecommunications authorities
Table 88 - Telmex lines in service and annual change - 1997 - 2005
Table 89 - Alestra lines in service and annual change - 1999 - 2005
Table 90 - Axtel lines in service and annual change - 2002 - 2005
Table 91 - Maxcom lines in service and annual change - 2001 - 2005
Table 92 - Fixed lines in service, annual change and teledensity - 1996 - 2005
Table 93 - Internet users, annual change and penetration - 1998 - 2005
Table 94 - Internet users by access technologies - 2002 - 2005
Table 95 - Internet subscribers by access technology - 2000 - 2005
Table 96 - Internet host computers and annual change - 1996 - 2004
Table 97 - Prodigy ADSL subscriber lines and annual change - 2002 - 2005
Table 98 - Megacable cable modem clients and annual change - 2001 - 2005
Table 99 - Cablered cable modem clients and annual change - 2002 - 2005
Table 100 - Cablevisión cable modem clients and annual change - 2002 - 2005
Table 101 - Pay TV subscribers, annual change and penetration - 1997 - 2005
Table 102 - Megacable pay TV subscribers and annual change - 2001 - 2005
Table 103 - Cablemás cable TV subscribers and annual change - 2002 - 2005
Table 104 - Cablevisión pay TV subscribers and annual change - 2000 - 2005
Table 105 - Sky DTH subscribers and annual change - 1999 - 2005
Table 106 - Mobile subscribers by operator and technology and annual change - September 2005
Table 107 - Mobile subscribers, annual change and penetration - 1996 - 2005
Table 108 - Mobile market share by operator - 2001 - 2005
Table 109 - Mobile penetration by region - 2002 - 2005
Table 110 - Telcel subscribers and annual change - 1998 - 2005
Table 111 - Movistar subscribers and annual change - 2001 - 2005
Table 112 - Unefon subscribers and annual change - 2000 - 2005
Table 113 - Iusacell subscribers and annual change - 1998 - 2005
Table 114 - Prepaid and postpaid subscribers and annual change - 1997 - 2005
Table 115 - Country statistics Puerto Rico - 2004
Table 116 - Telephone network statistics - 2004
Table 117 - Internet provider statistics - 2004
Table 118 - Internet user statistics - 2005
Table 119 - Mobile statistics - September 2005
Table 120 - National telecommunications authorities
Table 121 - PRTC fixed lines in service (residential and corporate) and annual change - 1998 - 2005
Table 122 - Fixed lines in service, annual change and teledensity - 1999 - 2004
Table 123 - Internet users, annual change and user penetration - 1998 - 2005
Table 124 - Broadband lines and annual change - 2002 - 2004
Table 125 - PRTC’s DSL lines and annual change - 2002 - 2004
Table 126 - Mobile subscribers by operator, technology and annual growth - September 2005
Table 127 - Mobile subscribers, annual growth and penetration - 1997 - 2005
Table 128 - Operators market share - 2002 - 2005

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