Eswatini (Swaziland) - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

Eswatini’s SIM card registration approaches deadline

Eswatini (Swaziland) was one of the last countries in the world to abolish an almost complete monopoly in all sectors of its telecommunications market. Until 2011 the state-owned posts and telecommunications operator SPTC also acted as the industry regulator and had a stake in the country’s sole mobile network, in an uneasy partnership with MTN. A new independent regulatory authority was established in late 2013 and has since embarked on radical changes to the telecom sector. SPTC was provided with a unified licence in early 2016, while MTN Swaziland secured spectrum in the 1800MHz band to provide LTE services and Swazi Mobile has launched 2G, 3G and LTE services, supported by a network sharing agreement with MTN.

Mobile market penetration in Eswatini is well above the average for the region, though subscriber growth has slowed in recent years. Real competition should provide a welcome boost to take the market to the next level.

The internet sector has been open to competition with four licensed Internet Service Providers (ISPs), but prices have remained high and market penetration relatively low. Although DSL services were introduced in 2008, development of the sector has been hampered by the limited fixed-line infrastructure and a lack of competition in the access and backbone network.

The country is landlocked, and so the country depends on neighbouring countries for international fibre bandwidth. This meant that access pricing was high for many years, though prices have fallen more recently in line with greater bandwidth availability resulting from several new submarine fibre optic cable systems that have reached the region in recent years.

Key developments:

  • Swazi Mobile gains mobile market share;
  • SIM card registration process to end in April 2019;
  • MTN expands LTE service reach;
  • MPs call for government to open access to the national fibre infrastructure and international gateway;
  • Mbabane Internet Exchange Point (MB-IX) is opened to route local traffic;
  • Report update includes operator data to Q4 2018, Telecom Maturity Index charts and analyses, recent market developments.

Companies mentioned in this report:

Swaziland Posts & Telecommunications Corporation (SPTC), Swazi MTN, Africa Online, Posix, Real Image, Viettel, Swazi Mobile.

Table of Contents

  • Key statistics

  • Country overview

  • Telecommunications market

    • Market analysis
  • Regional Africa Market Comparison

    • TMI vs GDP
    • Mobile and mobile broadband
    • Fixed and mobile broadband
  • Regulatory environment

    • Regulatory authority
    • Market liberalisation
  • Fixed network operator

  • Telecommunications infrastructure

    • Overview of the national telecom network
    • International infrastructure
  • Fixed-line broadband market

    • Introduction and statistical overview
      • Market analysis
      • Broadband statistics
      • Swaziland Internet Exchange Point
      • Public internet access locations
    • Fixed-line broadband technologies
      • Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) networks
      • Fibre-to-the-Premises (FttP) networks
      • Other fixed broadband services
      • Satellite broadband
  • Digital Economy

    • E-banking
  • Mobile market

    • Market analysis
      • Mobile statistics
      • Mobile broadband
    • Regulatory issues
      • Second mobile licence
      • SIM card registration
    • Mobile infrastructure
      • 4G (LTE)
      • 3G
    • Mobile network operators
      • Swazi MTN
      • SPTC
      • Swazi Mobile
    • Mobile content and applications
      • m-banking
  • Related reports


List of Tables

  • Table 1 – Top Level Country Statistics and Telco Authorities - Eswatini – 2018 (e)
  • Table 2 – SPTC financial results – 2004 – 2012
  • Table 3 – Historic - Fixed lines in service and teledensity in Eswatini – 1999 – 2009
  • Table 4 – Fixed lines in service and teledensity in Eswatini – 2010 – 2018
  • Table 5 – International bandwidth – 2008 – 2016
  • Table 6 – Internet users and penetration rate in Eswatini – 2000 – 2018
  • Table 7 – Proportion of households with internet access – 2007 – 2018
  • Table 8 – Broadband subscribers in Eswatini – 2008 – 2018
  • Table 9 – Historic - Mobile subscribers and penetration rate in Eswatini – 1999 – 2009
  • Table 10 – Mobile subscribers and penetration rate in Eswatini – 2010 – 2018
  • Table 11 – Active mobile broadband subscribers and penetration – 2010 – 2018
  • Table 12 – Swazi MTN subscribers – 2012 – 2018
  • Table 13 – Swazi MTN revenue – 2015 – 2018
  • Table 14 – Swazi MTN ARPU – 2001 – 2018
  • Table 15 – Swazi Mobile subscribers – 2017 – 2018

List of Charts

  • Chart 1 – Overall Africa view - Telecoms Maturity Index vs GDP per Capita – 2018
  • Chart 2 – Southern Africa - Telecoms Maturity Index vs GDP per Capita – 2018
  • Chart 3 – Africa – Bottom-tier Telecoms Maturity Index (Market Emergents) – 2018
  • Chart 4 – Southern Africa –Telecoms Maturity Index by country – 2018
  • Chart 5 – Southern Africa mobile subscriber penetration versus mobile broadband penetration – 2018
  • Chart 6 – Southern Africa fixed and mobile penetration rates – 2018
  • Chart 7 – Fixed lines in service and teledensity in Eswatini – 2005 – 2018
  • Chart 8 – Internet users and penetration rate in Eswatini – 2005 – 2018
  • Chart 9 – Mobile subscribers and penetration rate in Eswatini – 2005 – 2018
  • Chart 10 – Swazi MTN revenue – 2015 – 2018

List of Exhibits

  • Exhibit 1 – Map of Eswatini
  • Exhibit 2 – Generalised Market Characteristics by Market Segment
  • Exhibit 3 – Southern Africa - Key Characteristics of Telecoms Markets by Country
  • Exhibit 4 – Swazi MTN licence conditions

Related Reports

Purchase this Report

US$750.00

Licence Information

Share this Report

Purchase with Confidence

Paul, Many thanks for your inputs yesterday. You provided a compelling different perspective to our traditional infrastructure focus and this is valuable for our future planning. I also had very favourable feedback from our participants on your involvement.

Stephen Negus, Aurecon

Special Offers

Estonia - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses
US$575.00 until 18 Dec 2019
(normal price US$1,150.00)

Ireland - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses
US$575.00 until 18 Dec 2019
(normal price US$1,150.00)

Sample Reports

A selection of downloadable samples from our Annual Publications catalogue.


Download a Sample Report

More than 4,000 customers from 140 countries utilise BuddeComm Research

Are you interested in BuddeComm's Custom Research Service?

News & Views

Have the latest telecommunications industry news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to Paul's FREE weekly News & Views.