Macedonia - Telecoms, Mobile, Broadband and Digital Media - Statistics and Analyses
Macedonia's market consolidation leaves only two MNOs
The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (Macedonia) has been a European Union (EU) candidate country since 2005. As part of the EU pre-accession process, the country has built closer economic ties with the Union: the EU accounts for 60% of Macedonia's exports and about half of its imports. Closer regulatory and administrative ties with European Commission (EC) institutions have done much to develop the telecom sector and prepare the market for the competitive environment encouraged in the EU.
As part of EU integration legislation has implemented the principles of the EU's regulatory framework for communications, established an independent regulator and set out a number of provisions to provide for a competitive telecom market, including wholesale access to the incumbent's fixed-line network. Although the fixed telephony market has been liberalised, the incumbent MakTel continues to dominate the sector. Broadband services are widely available, with effective competition between DSL and cable platforms complemented by wireless broadband and a fast developing fibre sector. Into 2016 the number of DSL subscribers has continue to fall as customers are migrated to fibre networks.
Macedonia's mobile market is now served by only two mobile network operators, MakTel and Vip, the latter being formed by the merger of the local business units of Telekom Slovenije and Telekom Austria. Vip in May 2016 was also merged with its sister company Blizoo, and so has been able to provide a full suite of converged services. Mobile data services are becoming increasingly important following investments in LTE network rollouts and in upgrades to LTE-A technology.
Regulator planning to develop market conditions to promote more MVNOs; Blizoo acquires Skopje-based cablecos; Blizoo merges with Vip, which is rebranded as Vip; Makedonski Telekom completes PSTN migration to an all-IP network; MakTel signs managed services agreement with its vendor partner Ericsson; Lycamobile Macedonia launches services; regulator auctions 4G licences in the 800MHz and 1800MHz bands; report update includes the regulator's market data updates to Q4 2015, telcos' operating and financial data to Q2 2016, recent market developments.