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Tanzania - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband

The Tanzania - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband report includes all BuddeComm research data and analysis on this country. Covering trends and developments in telecommunications, mobile, internet, broadband, infrastructure and regulation.


Executive summary

Tanzania’s economy has been showing solid growth rates of between 5% and 8% every year since 2000. The International Monetary Fund predicts only a moderate decline of GDP growth to 5% in 2009 as a result of the global economic crisis, before 7% and more will be achieved again from 2011 onwards.

Mining and tourism are main industry sectors. However, the country continues to suffer from underdeveloped infrastructure, including roads, railways, electricity and telecommunications.

The government has actively embraced the principals of competition and a private sector including foreign participation as a means of rapidly advancing economic and social development. Policy reforms have led to the telecom sector becoming one of the more liberal ones in Africa. However, high import tariffs on telecoms equipment and taxes on telephone facilities by various authorities are still placing a burden on investors and operators.

Tanzania has two fixed-line operators (TTCL and Zantel) and seven operational mobile networks, with five additional players licensed under a new converged regulatory regime. With four major operators (Vodacom, Zain, Tigo and Zantel) the mobile market is expected to break the 50% penetration barrier during 2010, but subscriber growth is expected to slow to 20%. At the same time, the average revenue per user (ARPU) continues to fall.

A new converged licensing regime introduced in 2006 has brought a large number of new players into the market. The liberalisation of Voice over Internet Protocol telephony as well as the introduction of third generation (3G) mobile services and wireless broadband networks is boosting the Internet sector which has been hampered by the low level of development of the traditional fixed-line network.

The landing of the first fibre optic international submarine cables in the country in 2009 and 2010 is set to revolutionise the market which up to that point completely depended on expensive satellite connections. In parallel, the government has embarked on a national fibre backbone rollout to connect population centres around the country. However, the cost of international Internet bandwidth has so far not come down by as much and not as quickly as expected.

Key highlights:

  • Market analysis 2010;
  • New controversial telecoms law passed;
  • Profiles of major players in all market sectors;
  • Consolidation likely among the 12 licensed mobile operators;
  • ARPU has fallen below US$5 per month for some operators;
  • Second fibre optic international submarine cable reaches the country;
  • Government embarks on national fibre backbone rollout;
  • National telco likely to return to 100% government ownership.
This annual report provides a comprehensive overview of trends and developments in Tanzania’s telecommunications market. Subjects covered include:
  • Key statistics;
  • Market and industry overviews;
  • Regulatory environment and structural reform;
  • Major players (fixed, mobile and broadband);
  • Infrastructure development;
  • Mobile voice and data markets, including 3G;
  • Average Revenue per User (ARPU) trends;
  • Internet development and pricing;
  • Broadband, including 3G mobile;
  • Convergence (voice/data, fixed/wireless/mobile).

1. Executive summary
2. Key statistics
3. Telecommunications market
3.1 Market analysis 2010
3.2 Regional benchmarking
4. Regulatory environment
4.1 Background
4.2 Regulatory authority
4.2.1 TCRA
4.3 National Telecommunications Policy 1997
4.4 National ICT Policy 2003
4.5 Regulatory overhaul 2005
4.6 Electronic and Postal Communication Bill 2009
4.7 Telecom sector liberalisation
4.7.1 Converged licensing framework (CLF) 2005
4.7.2 International gateways
4.8 Interconnection
4.9 Universal access fund
4.10 Foreign ownership restrictions
4.11 Registration of subscriber details
5. Fixed network operators
5.1 TTCL
5.1.1 Privatisation and exclusivity period 2000 - 2005
5.1.2 SaskTel management contract 2007-2009
5.1.3 Future direction
5.2 Zantel
5.3 BOL
6. Fixed-line infrastructure
6.1 Fixed-line statistics
6.2 TTCL’s fixed-line network
6.3 Wireless local loop (WLL)
6.4 Private networks
6.5 National fibre backbone
6.6 International infrastructure
6.6.1 Submarine fibre
6.6.2 Satellite
6.6.3 Terrestrial
7. Internet market
7.1 Overview
7.1.1 Internet statistics
7.2 Limited availability of PCs
7.3 Public Internet access locations
7.4 Tanzania’s ISP market
7.4.1 Major ISPs
7.4.2 Tanzania Internet Exchange (TIX, AIXP)
7.5 ccTLD management
8. Broadband market
8.1 Overview
8.2 ADSL
8.3 Wireless broadband
8.3.1 iBurst
8.3.2 EV-DO
8.3.3 WiMAX
9. Convergence
9.1 Voice over Internet Protocol telephony
9.2 E-health
9.3 E-learning
10. Mobile communications
10.1 Overview of Tanzania’s mobile market
10.1.1 Mobile statistics
10.2 Major mobile operators
10.2.1 Vodacom Tanzania
10.2.2 Zain Tanzania (formerly Celtel)
10.2.3 Millicom Tanzania (Mobitel, Tigo)
10.2.4 Zantel
10.3 Tariffs
10.3.1 Special regional tariffs
10.3.2 Free international roaming
10.4 Mobile data services and pricing
10.4.1 Third generation (3G)
10.4.2 M-payment, m-banking
11. Related reports
List of Tables and Exhibits
Table 1 - Country statistics Tanzania - 2010
Table 2 - Telephone network statistics - 2010
Table 3 - Internet provider statistics - 2010
Table 4 - Internet user statistics - 2010
Table 5 - Mobile statistics - 2010
Table 6 - National telecommunications authority
Table 7 - Fixed lines in service by operator and teledensity - 1995 - 2011
Table 8 - Internet users and penetration rate - 1996 - 2011
Table 9 - TTCL ADSL pricing - 2009
Table 10 - Raha.com ADSL pricing - 2009
Table 11 - Zantel ZConnect EV-DO postpaid mobile data pricing - 2009
Table 12 - Mobile subscribers and penetration rate - 1995 - 2011
Table 13 - Mobile subscribers by operator and annual change - December 2009
Table 14 - Vodacom Tanzania ARPU - 2003 - 2009
Table 15 - Zain Tanzania ARPU - 2002 - 2009
Table 16 - Vodacom Tanzania mobile data pricing - 2009
Exhibit 1 - Licences issued under the new CLF - 2006 - 2010
Exhibit 2 - Emergency rescue scheme for Lake Victoria

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