2011 Egypt - Telecoms, Mobile, Broadband and Forecasts

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Last updated: 14 Mar 2012 Update History

Report Status: Archived

Report Pages: 68

Analyst: Peter Lange

Publication Overview

This annual report provides a comprehensive overview and analysis of trends and developments in Egypt’s telecommunications market, including forecasts. Subjects covered include:

  • Key statistics;
  • Market and industry overviews;
  • The impact of the global economic crisis;
  • Government policies affecting the telecoms industry;
  • Market liberalisation and regulatory issues;
  • Telecoms operators – privatisation, acquisitions, new licences;
  • Major players (fixed, mobile and broadband);
  • Infrastructure development;
  • Mobile voice and data markets;
  • Internet development and growth;
  • Broadband, including 3G mobile
  • Convergence (voice/data, fixed/wireless/mobile);
  • Average Revenue per User (ARPU), fixed and mobile;
  • Forecasts for mobile and Internet 2013 and 2016.

Companies covered in this report:

Telecom Egypt, Orascom Telecom, Mobinil (ECMS - France Telecom/Orange, Orascom), Vodafone Egypt, Etisalat Misr, Menatel, NilePhone, Thuraya; Iridium, Inmarsat, Alkan Communications, EgyptSat, MobiServe, TE Data (Telecom Egypt), EgyNet, LINKdotNET, Nile Online, Yalla, Equant, Noor, Vodafone Data (Raya Telecom), Menanet, Batelco, Soficom, Egypt Network, Internet Egypt, MenaNet, MenaSat, iSkySat, StormSat Egypt, PLC International, JumpTV.

Researcher:- Peter Lange
Current publication:- March 2012 (10th Edition)

Executive Summary

More than 100% annual growth in mobile broadband

Despite some restrictions and censorship, which culminated in the 2011 political and social unrest, Egypt is one of the most developed Internet markets in Africa in terms of users, international bandwidth and services offered. The country was again ranked fourth among African countries in the ‘Networked Readiness Index’ of the Davos World Economic Forum’s 2010/11 Global Information Technology Report. It is well connected through national and international fibre infrastructure and one of Africa’s first Fibre-to-the-Home (FttH) deployments. Egypt also has some of the lowest prices for DSL services on the continent, the result of a highly competitive sector with more than 150 Internet and data service providers.

The strongest growth is currently seen in mobile broadband services, which offers the network operators – Mobinil (backed by Orascom and France Telecom), Vodafone Egypt (VFE) and Etisalat – new revenue streams in an environment of falling average revenue per user (ARPU). All three have also acquired controlling stakes in leading data and Internet service providers.

Egypt became one of the first countries in Africa to launch 3G mobile services, following the award of the country’s third mobile licence in 2006. The record price that was paid for the licence indicated the potential that is seen in the Egyptian mobile market, and the penetration rate has indeed multiplied since then and broke the 100% barrier in 2011. A fourth mobile licence is not planned before 2013.

Egypt also has the largest fixed-line market in Africa and the Arab region, with a highly profitable incumbent telco (Telecom Egypt) which was partially privatised through an IPO. A second national fixed-line licence tendered in 2009 received strong interest from international bidders, but the process has been postponed to at least 2013. Instead, two regionally limited triple-play licences for fixed-line voice, high-speed broadband and pay-TV services were issued in 2010. Efforts are underway to roll out next-generation networks, offering converged IP-based voice, data and entertainment services.

Market highlights:

  • Mobile penetration has broken the 100% barrier;
  • Decline in fixed-line subscriptions continues;
  • Mobile ARPU continues to fall;
  • Some of the lowest broadband and mobile tariffs in Africa;
  • More than 100% annual growth in mobile broadband subscriptions;
  • New mobile or fixed-line licences not expected before 2013.

Estimated market penetration rates in Egypt’s telecoms sector – end-2012


Penetration rate







(Source: BuddeComm based on various sources)

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