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South Korea - Key Statistics, Infrastructure, Regulatory Overview and Forecasts


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

South Korea has one of the world’s most active telecommunications and Information Technology (IT) markets backed by strong support from the government. As well as the commitment of the government, the sector is boosted by an innovative private sector and a technologically savvy population. Spending on ICT and high-technology equipment helped lead a transformation of the economy. The government aims to transform the country into a knowledge-based information society in a ‘smart-age’. This report provides an overview of the South Korean telecoms market, including key statistics and infrastructure investments. Forecasts for fixed-line subscribers are included to 2017.

Key Developments:

Increasing share of the ICT industry contribution to GDP; mobile penetration rates near 110%; continuing decline in fixed-line voice subscriptions and revenue as VoIP gains in popularity; the emergence of a National Strategy for Green IT; government promotion of new industry creation into 2018 such as 4G broadcasts and 3D and Smart television; new technology development for controlling a screen with a gaze.

Companies covered in this report include:

KT; LG U+; SK Broadband; SK Telecom


1. Synopsis
2. Key statistics
3. Country Overview
3.1 Background
3.2 South Korea’s economy
4. Telecommunications market
4.1 Government support
4.2 ICT industry as an engine of economic growth
4.3 Communication industry revenue by type
4.4 Global rankings and South Korea
4.4.1 Government Broadband Index - EIU
4.4.2 Global Innovation Index – INSEAD
5. Telecommunications market sectors
5.1 Fixed-line and mobile services
5.1.1 Fixed-line network
5.1.2 Mobile network
5.2 Broadband in South Korea
6. Forecasts
6.1 Forecast fixed-line subscribers – 2012 - 2013; 2017
6.2 Forecasting methodology
7. Regulatory environment – KCC
7.1 KCC – Overview and responsibilities
7.2 KCC – related laws
8. National Internet Development Agency of Korea (NIDA)
9. Policy overview
10. Infrastructure investment sTRATEGIES
10.1 Infrastructure investment overview
10.2 Infrastructure investment stages of growth
10.2.1 Ubiquitous Korea (u-Korea)
10.3 Green IT in South Korea
10.4 Top 10 ICT focus areas: 2010 - 2018
10.5 New Technology Development
10.5.1 Controlling TVs with one’s eyes
11. Related reports
Table 1 – Country statistics South Korea – 2012
Table 2 – Telecom revenue and investment statistics – 2011
Table 3 – Telephone network statistics – September 2012
Table 4 – Internet user statistics – December 2011
Table 5 – Broadband statistics – August 2012
Table 6 – Mobile statistics – March 2012
Table 7 – National telecommunications authorities
Table 8 – South Korea GDP and GDP per capita – 2000 - 2017
Table 9 – Growth of ICT industry – 2003 - 2010
Table 10 – Average growth rate per GDP and medium over 10 years from 2001 to 2010
Table 11 – Telecommunications fixed-line, mobile, total revenue and investment – 2000 - 2009
Table 12 – Wireline communication service revenue by sector – 2008 - 2013
Table 13 – Wireless communication service revenue by sector – 2008 - 2012
Table 14 – Fixed and mobile lines in service and teledensity – 1991 – 2013
Table 15 – KT Corp’s fixed-line subscribers and market share – 2004 - 2012
Table 16 – Telephony (PSTN + VoIP) subscribers, market share by operator – September 2012
Table 17 –Telephone lines by operator (PSTN) – 2005 - 2012
Table 18 –Telephone lines by operator (VoIP) – 2006 - 2012
Table 19 – Broadband internet subscribers by operator – 2005 - 2012
Table 20 – Broadband internet market share by operator – 2005 – 2012
Table 21 – Forecast fixed-line subscribers and penetration - higher band: 2012 - 2013; 2017
Table 22 – Forecast fixed-line subscribers and penetration - lower band: 2012 - 2013; 2017
Chart 1: Telecommunications revenue breakdown – 2000 versus 2009
Chart 2 – South Korea fixed-line and mobile subscribers – 2000 - 2013
Chart 3 – PSTN and VoIP subscribers by major operators – 2006 - 2012
Chart 4 – Broadband internet subscribers by operator – 2005 - 2012
Exhibit 1 – Map of South Korea
Exhibit 2 – Informatisation policies and paradigms – 1998 - 2012
Exhibit 3 – Informatisation Promotion: Execution body
Exhibit 4 – Green IT promotion strategies of domestic companies

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