Costa Rica’s liberalised telecom sector has seen substantial growth in all sectors in recent years. Although the state-owned operator ICE remains the dominant provider of fixed-line services, the regional operators Claro and Movistar are significant players in the important mobile services market.
The number of fixed-lines fell for a number of years though more recently the decline has been offset by growing consumer use of VoIP services. This was stimulated by the 2014 hike in tariffs for fixed-line calls.
Costa Rica’s broadband market is the most developed in Central America, with the highest broadband penetration for this sub-region. Geographical distribution however is unequal, with a much higher digital gap than in the case of telephone services. Compared with the whole of Latin America, Costa Rica’s broadband penetration lags behind Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, and some Caribbean islands.
There was a steady increase in overall telecom sector revenue for a number of years, peaking at 24% 2014 though this has since fallen, being a more moderate 4.2% in 2016 and 3% in 2017. Fixed-line voice services account for about 5% of revenue while revenue from VoIP services, though increasing sharply in recent years, still accounts for only 1%.
The Costa Rican telecom sector has showed greater resilience than most others in the region, and with the implementation of number portability there is greater scope for increased competition in coming years.
Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE), RASCA, Tigo, Cable Tica.
Table of Contents
Companies (Major Players)
Mobile & Wireless Broadband and Media
Mobile Communications (voice and infrastructure)
Regulations & Government Policies
Strategies & Analyses (Industry & Markets)
Number of pages 49
Last updated 31 Oct 2018
Analyst: Henry Lancaster
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