The political unrest in Iraq has battered the telecommunications sector and created a very challenging environment for the telecoms operators. The three mobile network operators which hold national licences are Zain Iraq, Asiacell and Korek Telecom. The unstable economy combined with a decrease in consumer spending - along with the destruction of telecoms infrastructure; resulted in a stagnating market. However, in 2018 there are signs of stability and in turn, the operators are beginning to see some small turn arounds in terms of revenue growth.
There is high international interest in the Iraqi market with its potential to recover economically pinned on its large oil and natural gas reserves. Iraq offers much potential for telecoms infrastructure development with many under-served areas requiring better coverage and/or reconstruction. There will also be opportunities in developing both 3G and 4G deployment, with early signs that mobile data revenues are already increasing on the back of existing 3G networks.
Prior to the recent civil tension; 4G LTE had been deployed in some areas of Iraq and there was also a progressive fibre optic network underway across parts of the country. While it is unknown how widespread the damage to this infrastructure has been, there are various areas regaining network access.
The country continues to move forward with the Ministry of Communications (MoC) launching a Fibre-to-The-Home project. This will see an initial 90,000 lines deployed across selected governates.
Overall the current security situation has been an impediment to telecommunications development in Iraq. However, there are positive signs for the future with signs of improved stability and some reconstruction efforts beginning to emerge.
Iraqi Telephone and Postal Company (ITPC), Newroz Telecom, Asiacell, Zain Iraq, Korek Telecom, Regional Telecom, Communication and Media Commission (CMC), Ericsson, ScopeSky Communications.
Please note: Due to the civil unrest in Iraq, current and detailed information on the telecoms sector can at times be difficult to obtain.
Companies (Major Players)
Mobile & Wireless Broadband and Media
Mobile Communications (voice and infrastructure)
Regulations & Government Policies
Strategies & Analyses (Industry & Markets)
Number of pages 36
Last updated 26 Mar 2018
Analyst: Kylie Wansink
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