Bosnia-Herzegovina - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses
Bosnia-Herzegovina looks set for additional LTE spectrum release
The economic prosperity of Bosnia-Herzegovina (BiH) largely rests with the country’s continuing integration with the European Union (EU). GDP growth has recovered from the slow-down seen in the wake of the GFC in 2008 and 2009, though growth has been inconsistent. GDP grew 3% in 2015 before falling to 2% in 2016. Economic output is expected to have increased slightly in 2017, reaching 2.5%. There remain some significant challenges, not least of which is high unemployment which continues to hinder the country’s economic growth potential.
The telecom market has been liberalised and a regulatory framework created based on the EU’s regulatory framework for communications. Although Bosnia-Herzegovina remains an EU candidate country, in July 2017 it applied amended mobile roaming charges to fit in with changes introduced across the Union.
The market is characterised by three zones, each with an incumbent telco. The largest operator BH Telecom is the dominant provider, while Telekom Srpske operates in Republika Srpska and HT Mostar is active in Herzegovina.
The fixed-line broadband network is comparatively underdeveloped, with the result that investments made in mobile upgrades by BH Mobile and Telekom Srpske are facilitating broadband connectivity in the country to a greater extent than is common elsewhere in Europe.
Although a number of fixed-line operators offer services the market is dominated by the three incumbent operators, which control 99% of the market. All three incumbents are subject to specific obligations designed to improve competition.
Internet services are available through the incumbents and a number of alternative operators. DSL and cable are the chief platforms for fixed-line connectivity, while fibre broadband as yet has only a small market presence.
The three mobile network operators (MNOs), each affiliated with one of the incumbent fixed-line operators, provide national coverage. Their upgraded networks are helping to support broadband in rural areas where fixed-line infrastructure is insufficient. In addition, mobile data and mobile broadband offers will provide future revenue growth given the limited potential of mobile voice services.
Regulator calls for bids for 400MHz fixed-wireless licence;
Telemach extends footprint by using power utility’s poles;
New mobile roaming fees come into effect;
Regulator opens consultation of releasing spectrum for LTE services;
Fixed-line voice revenue continues to slide as customers migrate to VoIP and mobile services for voice calls;
Report update included the regulator’s market data to June 2017, telcos’ operating and financial data to Q2 2017, recent market developments.
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