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Paraguay - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Market Insights and Statistics

Paraguay - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Market Insights and Statistics

Growth in international bandwidth expected to result in lower broadband pricing into 2015

BuddeComm's report Paraguay - Telecoms, Mobile, Broadband, and Forecasts provides a comprehensive overview of the trends and developments in the country's telecommunications market, including the regulator's market data to June 2013, telcos' financial and operating data updates and recent market developments.

The state-owned incumbent, Corporación Paraguaya de Comunicaciones (Copaco), retains a monopoly on all fixed-line voice services, including local telephony, international long distance telephony, and VoIP. In the mobile market, however, there has been competition since 1998. The internet market is also open to competition, and there are over a dozen ISPs offering services. Copaco lost its monopoly over the international backbone for internet connectivity in early 2009.

Growth in the number of mobile subscribers has been helped by the poor condition of much of the country's fixed-line infrastructure. Underinvestment in infrastructure by Copaco has meant that lift Paraguay's teledensity remains very low for the region. There is little expectation that the situation will be addressed effectively until the operator is restructured.

Another major drawback for Copaco and for Paraguay's telecommunications generally is the country's landlocked position, which makes it dependant on neighbouring nations for interconnection with submarine cable networks. This has driven up the price of telecom services, particularly broadband.

In light of these difficulties, Paraguay's fixed broadband market has also been hampered. The high cost of international access has contributed to low penetration though there has been rapid growth in recent years in Asunción and other major urban centres. Available technologies include ADSL, cable modem, FttP, and WiMAX. Copaco has a near-monopoly in the ADSL market, given that there is little regulatory provision for unbundled local loops and other access mechanisms. ADSL is the main fixed broadband technology, but it is unavailable in much of the country due to low teledensity.

Copaco's main competitor in the fixed broadband market is Millicom's Tigo, which offers broadband via cable modem under the brand name Tigo Hogar. The service is available in Asunción and neighbouring towns over a Hybrid Fibre-Coaxial (HFC) network. Tigo also provides broadband using WiMAX and FttP technologies.

There is effective competition in the mobile market, which is served by four operators: Tigo (the market leader), Telecom Argentina's Personal, América Móvil's Claro, and Copaco's Vox. These operators have capitalised on the opportunities created by poor fixed-line infrastructure and by consumer demand for mobile voice and data services. There are about 18 mobile phones in Paraguay for every fixed-line in service, the highest proportion in Latin America.

Table 1 Penetration of telecom services 2014 (e)
Sector | Penetration
Fixed-line telephony | 6.5%
Fixed-broadband | 1.6%
Mobile telephony | 106.2%
(Source: BuddeComm based on industry data)

Market highlights:

Auction of AWS spectrum in the 1700MHz and 2100MHz bands will further encourage competition in the mobile market; satellite TV services drive growth in the number of pay TV subscribers; free WiFi networks to be set up in 50 town centres by end-2015, paid for by the Universal Service Fund (USF); Paraguay aiming to join the South American fibre ring project developed by the Union of South American Nations; regulator prepares for auction of spectrum in the 700MHz band in 2015; report update includes operator data to Q3 2014, recent market developments.

Paraguay is an interesting albeit challenging market for prospective telecom investors, with considerable long-term growth potential especially in the fixed and mobile broadband sectors. The report covers trends and developments in the fixed-line, mobile, broadband, and pay TV markets.

Subjects include:

Market and industry analyses, trends and developments;
Facts, figures, and statistics;
Government policies and regulatory issues;
Major players (fixed, mobile, and broadband);
Fixed-line market and infrastructure;
Broadband market (including ADSL, cable modem, WiMAX, and FttH);
Broadcasting (including cable TV, satellite TV, and digital terrestrial TV);
Mobile market (including 3G and mobile broadband);
Convergence and triple play solutions;
Internet, VoIP, IPTV;
Scenario forecasts for the fixed-line, mobile, and broadband markets for the years 2015 and 2020;
Tigo and Vox secure FSU funding to add locations to the national fibre network;
Claro develops M2M services with Jasper Wireless.


1. Executive summary
2. Key statistics
3. Country overview
3.1 Economic background
4. Telecommunications market
4.1 Overview of Paraguay's telecom market
4.2 Market analysis
4.3 eHealth
5. Regulatory environment
5.1 Background
5.2 Regulatory authority
5.2.1 Comision Nacional de Telecomunicaciones (Conatel)
5.3 Number Portability
5.4 Universal Service Fund
5.5 Foreign investment
6. Fixed network operators in Paraguay
6.1 Copaco
7. Telecommunications infrastructure
7.1 National telecom network
7.1.1 Fixed-line statistics
7.1.2 Forecasts fixed-line market 2013; 2015; 2020
7.1.3 Public payphones
7.2 International infrastructure
7.3 Infrastructure developments
7.3.1 Wireless Local Loop (WLL)
7.3.2 IP and Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP)
8. Wholesale
9. Broadband access market
9.1 Overview
9.1.1 Broadband statistics
9.2 WiMAX
9.2.1 Forecasts fixed broadband market 2013; 2015; 2020
10. Convergence
11. Broadcasting
11.1 Pay TV
11.2 Digital terrestrial TV
11.3 Internet Protocol TV (IPTV)
12. Mobile communications
12.1 Overview of Paraguay's mobile market
12.1.1 Mobile statistics
12.1.2 Mobile Number Portability (MNP)
12.1.3 Forecasts mobile market 2013; 2015; 2020
12.2 Regulatory issues
12.2.1 Spectrum allocations and spectrum auctions
12.3 Mobile technologies
12.3.1 Overview
12.3.2 Third generation (3G) mobile
12.3.3 Long-term Evolution (LTE)
12.3.4 Spectrum auction - 1700MHz and 2100MHz
12.4 Major mobile operators
12.4.1 Tigo (Millicom International Cellular)
12.4.2 Personal (Núcleo/Telecom Argentina)
12.4.3 Claro (América Móvil)
12.4.4 Vox (Hola Paraguay/Copaco)
12.5 Mobile Messaging
12.5.1 Short Message Service (SMS)
12.5.2 Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS)
12.6 Mobile broadband
12.7 Machine-to-Machine (M2M)
12.8 Mobile satellite
13. Related reports
Table 1 Penetration of telecom services 2014 (e)
Table 2 Country statistics 2014 (e)
Table 3 Telephone network statistics 2014 (e)
Table 4 Internet user statistics 2014 (e)
Table 5 Broadband statistics 2014 (e)
Table 6 Mobile statistics 2014 (e)
Table 7 National telecommunications authority
Table 8 Evolution of GDP in Paraguay 2000 - 2014
Table 9 Fixed and mobile market share of subscribers 1998 - 2014
Table 10 Historic - Fixed lines in service and teledensity 1997 - 2004
Table 11 Fixed lines in service and teledensity 2005 - 2014
Table 12 Forecast fixed-line subscribers higher growth scenario 2013; 2015; 2020
Table 13 Forecast fixed-line subscribers lower growth scenario 2013; 2015; 2020
Table 14 International bandwidth 2005- 2013
Table 15 Historic - Internet users and user penetration 1998 - 2004
Table 16 Internet users and user penetration 2005 - 2015
Table 17 Historic - Broadband subscribers, annual change and penetration 2000 - 2004
Table 18 Broadband subscribers, annual change and penetration 2005 - 2015
Table 19 Cable and DSL broadband subscribers 2009 2015+
Table 20 Fixed internet subscribers by access speed 2011 - 2013
Table 21 Forecast fixed broadband subscribers higher growth scenario 2013; 2015; 2020
Table 22 Forecast broadband subscribers lower growth scenario 2013; 2015; 2020
Table 23 Pay TV subscribers by platform 2010- 2013
Table 24 Historic - Mobile subscribers and penetration rate 1997 - 2004
Table 25 Mobile subscribers and penetration rate 2005 - 2015
Table 26 Mobile subscribers: contract and prepaid 2011 - 2013
Table 27 Mobile operators' market share 2002 - 2014
Table 28 Forecast mobile subscribers higher growth scenario 2015; 2020
Table 29 Forecast mobile subscribers lower growth scenario 2015; 2020
Table 30 Mobile spectrum distribution
Table 31 Tigo - mobile subscribers 2002 - 2014
Table 32 Personal - mobile subscribers 2002 - 2014
Table 33 Personal handset sales 2011 - 2013
Table 34 Personal mobile revenue 2011 - 2014
Table 35 SMS traffic 2012 - 2014
Table 36 Mobile broadband penetration 2009 - 2014
Table 37 Mobile broadband subscribers by data rate 2009 - 2013
Chart 1 Fixed lines in service and teledensity 2005 2015
Chart 2 Internet users and user penetration 2005 2015
Chart 3 Broadband subscribers, annual change and penetration 2005 2015
Chart 4 Fixed internet subscribers by access speed 2011 - 2013
Chart 5 Mobile subscribers and penetration rate 2005 2015
Chart 6 Mobile subscribers: contract and prepaid 2011 2013
Exhibit 1 Map of Paraguay

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