Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 05/02/2014 -- BMI's Q214 Southern Africa report analyses the latest industry, regulatory and macroeconomic developments in the telecoms markets in Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, Mauritius, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe. It also contains analysis of the latest market data relating to the end of Q413 and an update of our five-year forecasts to 2018 for the mobile, fixed-line and internet sectors.
- The seven countries in our coverage recorded an average growth of 11.9% in FY13. Mozambique recorded the fastest growth at 39%, while Mauritius recorded the slowest growth at 3%.
- The average mobile penetration rate of the seven countries in our coverage was 99.1% at the end of December 2013. Botswana had the highest penetration rate at 157.8%, while Mozambique had the lowest at 48.4%.
- 3G as a proportion of total mobile penetration reached double figures in five countries by the end of 2013.
- Although internet penetration is rising rapidly due to the increasing use of mobile phones to access the web, broadband penetration still remains below 5% in most cases, held back by the high cost PCs and laptops.
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The Zambia Information and Communication Technology Authority (ZICTA) has enforced the deactivation of unregistered mobile phone lines following the expiration of the January 31 2014 deadline. Approximately 2.4mn lines were deactivated, according to the regulator, representing more than 20% of the total subscriber base. The impact of the deactivation of unregistered SIMs on Zambia's mobile subscriber base is significant, at least in the short term, despite the surge in registrations in January following an awareness campaign by the regulator, leading us to revise down our short-term market outlook. We now expect a contraction of around 2.5% in FY14, but expect the market return to growth in FY15 and the remainder of our forecast period. This view is supported by the relatively low mobile penetration rate in the country, estimated at 77.7% at the end of 2013, and the likelihood of aggressive subscriptions growth strategies by the operators, such as network expansion to underserved areas and promotional offers.
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