Albania - Telecoms, Mobile, Broadband and Digital Media - Statistics and Analyses

Executive summary

Albanian telecom sector continues showing slow but steady growth

Albania’s telecom market is consistent with developments elsewhere in the region, with fixed-line telephony penetration declining as subscribers migrate to mobile solutions and with ongoing government efforts to improve broadband availability and access conditions. To this end the regulator recently imposed LLU and bitstream access conditions on the incumbent telco Albtelecom.

The country’s small economy is highly dependent on the key trading partners of Italy and Greece. The former still struggles to develop growth while the latter faces yet more austerity as part of the ongoing acceptance of bail out conditions from international lenders. These economic considerations had a marked impact on Albania’s telecom sector, with revenue growth having declined for a number of years before showing marginal recovery from 2014.

Penetration in the fixed-line and broadband sectors remains very low by international standards. Although regulatory obstacles remain, this low penetration provides opportunities for further investment in network upgrades to help propel the country’s economic growth through digital offerings and IP-based technologies and services. Such investment in fixed-line infrastructure is being encouraged by the regulator through amended access measures and by the government through its own funding programs. However, as mobile network infrastructure improves consumers will continue to prefer this platform for voice and data services, and as a result the mobile sector will be the focus for future growth in the overall market.

The country has long sought accession to the European Union (EU) which has benefited its telecoms sector through closer scrutiny of its regulatory regime and through the injection of funding to help modernise infrastructure. Albania signed a Stabilisation and Association Agreement with the EU, which came into force in mid-2009. As part of the EU pre-accession process, Albania has received financial aid to build public institutions and improve cross-border co-operation under the EU’s Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance funding mechanism. Since June 2014 Albania has been recognised as an official candidate for accession to the EU.

Key developments:

Vodafone Albania shuts down its M-Pesa service; Plus Communications and Albtelecom secure 2600MHz spectrum licenses; Albtelecom’s share of the broadband market continues to be squeezed by competitors; report update includes the regulator’s market data to March 2017, operator data to Q2 2017, recent market developments.

Companies mentioned in this report:

Vodafone Albania, Albtelecom (Eagle Mobile), Telekom Albania (AMC), Cosmote, Turk Telecom, Primo Communications.

Table of Contents

  • 1. Executive summary
  • 2. Key statistics
  • 3. Country overview
  • 4. Telecommunications market
    • 4.1 Overview of Albania’s telecom market
  • 5. Regulatory environment
    • 5.1 Historical overview
    • 5.2 Regulatory authority
    • 5.3 Telecom sector liberalisation
      • 5.3.1 Privatisation
      • 5.3.2 Interconnection
      • 5.3.3 Number Portability (NP)
      • 5.3.4 Universal Service Obligation (USO)
  • 6. Fixed network operators
    • 6.1 Albtelecom
    • 6.2 Albania Online/Albanian Fibre Backbone (AFB)/Primo
  • 7. Telecommunications infrastructure
    • 7.1 Overview of the national telecom network
    • 7.2 Albanian National Broadband Network
    • 7.3 International infrastructure
  • 8. Fixed-line broadband market
    • 8.1 Introduction and statistical overview
    • 8.2 Broadband statistics
    • 8.3 Forecasts – fixed broadband subscribers – 2018; 2020; 2022
    • 8.4 Notes on scenario forecasts
    • 8.5 Fixed-line broadband technologies
      • 8.5.1 Asymmetrical Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL)
      • 8.5.2 HFC networks
      • 8.5.3 Fibre-to-the-Premises (FttP) networks
      • 8.5.4 Other fixed broadband services
  • 9. Digital media
    • 9.1 Introduction
    • 9.2 Cable TV (CATV)
    • 9.3 Satellite-based digital pay TV developments
    • 9.4 Digital Terrestrial TV (DTTV)
    • 9.5 Videostreaming
    • 9.6 Bundled services
    • 9.7 e-government
  • 10. Mobile market
    • 10.1 Market analysis
    • 10.2 Mobile statistics
    • 10.3 Mobile data
      • 10.3.1 Short Message Service (SMS)/Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS)
    • 10.4 Mobile broadband
    • 10.5 Regulatory issues
      • 10.5.1 GSM licences
      • 10.5.2 3G/UMTS licences
      • 10.5.3 Licences – 2015
      • 10.5.4 Licences – 2016
      • 10.5.5 Mobile Termination Rates (MTRs)
      • 10.5.6 Mobile Number Portability (MNP)
    • 10.6 Mobile infrastructure
        • 10.6.1 Other infrastructure developments
      • 10.7 Major mobile operators
        • 10.7.1 Telekom Albania (Albanian Mobile Communications)
        • 10.7.2 Vodafone Albania
        • 10.7.3 Albtelecom
        • 10.7.4 Plus Communications
        • 10.7.5 Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs)
      • 10.8 Mobile content and applications
        • 10.8.1 Mobile TV
        • 10.8.2 M-money
    • 11. Related reports
    • Table 1 – Country statistics Albania – 2017 (e)
    • Table 2 – Telephone network statistics – 2017 (e)
    • Table 3 – Internet user statistics – 2017 (e)
    • Table 4 – Fixed-line broadband subscriber statistics – 2017 (e)
    • Table 5 – Mobile statistics – 2017 (e)
    • Table 6 – National telecommunications authority
    • Table 7 – Telecom market revenue by sector – 2009 - 2017
    • Table 8 – Telecom market share of revenue by operator– 2010 - 2015
    • Table 9 – Historic - Revenue by operator– 2008 - 2012
    • Table 10 – Fixed-line number portings – 2013 - 2016
    • Table 11 – Historic - Fixed lines in service and penetration – 1999 - 2009
    • Table 12 – Fixed lines in service and penetration – 2010 - 2018
    • Table 13 – Historic - Fixed lines in service (Albtelecom and altnets) – 1999 - 2009
    • Table 14 – Fixed lines in service (Albtelecom and altnets) – 2010 - 2017
    • Table 15 – Fixed lines in service by minor operator – 2010 - 2017
    • Table 16 – Fixed-line telephony market share by operator – 2014 - 2017
    • Table 17 – Fixed-line broadband subscribers and penetration rate – 2007 - 2018
    • Table 18 – Internet users, subscribers and penetration rates – 2000 - 2018
    • Table 19 – Fixed-broadband market share by operator – 2010 - 2017
    • Table 20 – Fixed-broadband subscribers by operator – 2010 - 2017
    • Table 21 – Forecast fixed broadband subscribers –2018; 2020; 2022
    • Table 22 – DSL broadband subscribers – 2008 - 2018
    • Table 23 – Cable modem broadband subscribers – 2008 - 2018
    • Table 24 – FttP broadband subscribers – 2010 - 2016
    • Table 25 – Subscribers to bundled services by type – 2014 - 2017
    • Table 26 – Mobile AMPU and ARPU – 2010 - 2015
    • Table 27 – Vodafone prepaid subscribers – 2005 - 2017
    • Table 28 – Historic - Mobile subscribers and penetration rate – 1999 - 2009
    • Table 29 – Mobile subscribers and penetration rate – 2010 - 2018
    • Table 30 – Mobile SIM cards by operator – 2003 – 2017
    • Table 31 – Mobile subscriber market share of active SIM cards by operator – 2009 - 2017
    • Table 32 – Active mobile SIM cards by operator – 2010 – 2017
    • Table 33 – Mobile market revenue by operator – 2003 – 2015
    • Table 34 – Mobile market net profit by operator – 2010 – 2015
    • Table 35 – Mobile market investment by operator – 2010 – 2015
    • Table 36 – Total mobile traffic – 2012 – 2017
    • Table 37 – Average use of mobile services, active users – 2011 – 2016
    • Table 38 – Mobile data traffic – 2013 - 2017
    • Table 39 – Total SMS messages sent – 2002 - 2017
    • Table 40 – Total MMS messages sent – 2010 - 2012
    • Table 41 – Mobile subscribers by type (3G, USB) – 2013 – 2017
    • Table 42 – Mobile internet subscribers by operator via 3G/LTE handsets – 2011 - 2017
    • Table 43 – Mobile internet subscribers by operator via USB/modem – 2011 - 2016
    • Table 44 – Active mobile broadband subscribers – 2011 - 2016
    • Table 45 – AMC MTRs – 2005 - 2016
    • Table 46 – MTRs – 2013 - 2016
    • Table 47 – SMS termination tariffs – 2005 - 2011
    • Table 48 – Mobile number portings – 2011 - 2016
    • Table 49 – Telekom Albania financial data – 2005 - 2017
    • Table 50 – Telekom Albania mobile revenue, EBITDA – 2015 - 2017
    • Table 51 – Telekom Albania active mobile subscribers – 2006 - 2017
    • Table 52 – Vodafone Albania subscribers – 2008 - 2017
    • Table 53 – Albtelecom active mobile subscribers – 2014 - 2017
    • Table 54 – Albtelecom mobile revenue – 2015 - 2016
    • Table 55 – Plus Communications active mobile subscribers – 2014 - 2017
    • Chart 1 – Fixed lines in service and penetration – 2010 – 2018
    • Chart 2 – Fixed lines in service by operator – 2005 – 2017
    • Chart 3 – Internet users, subscribers and penetration rates – 2005 – 2018
    • Chart 4 – Mobile subscribers and penetration rate – 2005 – 2018
    • Chart 5 – Mobile SIM cards by operator – 2003 – 2017
    • Chart 6 – Mobile revenue by operator – 2003 – 2015

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