Virus impact over each market - telecom operators, government agencies and regulators' responses - revised forecasts for the next 5 years.
Last updated: 28 Apr 2020 Update History
Report Pages: 86
Analyst: Sebastien De Rosbo
Fiji hosts a relatively sophisticated communications infrastructure with the highest mobile and Internet penetration in the Pacific islands. It is the leading market to watch in terms of both 4G LTE and 5G development in this region.
The Fijian mobile operators continue to heavily invest in 4G LTE and LTE-A technologies, and these networks now account for the largest share of mobile connections. Concentrating on the more highly populated areas, the operators are preparing for the next growth area of mobile data.
The mobile operators, which include Digicel Fiji and Vodafone Fiji also have 5G in mind and are preparing the networks to be pre-5G ready.
Fiji presents a challenging geographic environment for infrastructure developments generally, due to its population being spread across more than 100 islands. However, the majority of Fijians live on the two main islands of Viti Levu and Vanua Levu.
Fiji is well-served by 3 international submarine cable systems and in 2018 the Fijian government implemented plans to connect the two major islands via a domestic submarine cable system - and this will provide high-speed Internet access between the two.
It will also provide a more secure link between the two islands in times of emergency weather events like the regular tropical cyclones which often cause much destruction to this area. These natural disasters often destroy essential infrastructure including electricity and telecoms equipment.
BuddeComm notes that the outbreak of the Coronavirus in 2020 is having a significant impact on production and supply chains globally. During the coming year the telecoms sector to various degrees is likely to experience a downturn in mobile device production, while it may also be difficult for network operators to manage workflows when maintaining and upgrading existing infrastructure. Overall progress towards 5G may be postponed or slowed down in some countries.
On the consumer side, spending on telecoms services and devices is under pressure from the financial effect of large-scale job losses and the consequent restriction on disposable incomes. However, the crucial nature of telecom services, both for general communication as well as a tool for home-working, will offset such pressures. In many markets the net effect should be a steady though reduced increased in subscriber growth.
The report covers the responses of the telecom operators as well as government agencies and regulators as they react to the crisis to ensure that citizens can continue to make optimum use of telecom services. This can be reflected in subsidy schemes and the promotion of tele-health and tele-education, among other solutions.
Amalgamated Telecom Holdings (ATH), Telecom Fiji Limited (TFL), Fiji International Telecommunications Limited (FINTEL), Kacific Broadband Satellites, Southern Cross Cable Network (SCCN), Vodafone Fiji Limited (VFL), Digicel Fiji, Inkk Mobile, Unwired Fiji, Fintel Internet Services (Kidanet).
As you know, I have resigned from the Labor Ministry and have decided not to re-contest the seat of Charlton at the next election – both for personal reasons.
Before leaving Parliament, I particularly wish to record my thanks to you for your generous and constructive participation in the deliberations that generated significant economic policy reforms for the Australian community. Continuous economic transformation is a key challenge that faces all Governments.
The development of sound public policy should always be contestable. Ultimately, good and equitable outcomes are not concessions to any particular interest group, but the careful balancing of interests to create the greatest possible benefit for the nation. You have contributed to that, and I sincerely thank you for it.
Greg Combet, Former Minister for Climate Change, Industry and Innovation
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