Syria-Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband-Statistics and Analyses

Syria-Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband-Statistics and Analyses

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Executive Summary

Maintaining basic telecommunications services has become a priority for war-torn Syria

The civil war which has been underway in Syria for many years has left a trail of destruction and despair. The serious humanitarian issues have gained the international attention of the global community and efforts are underway to alleviate some of the more urgent needs, such as food shortages and medical attention.

While some parts of Syria have been more seriously affected than others, there are reportedly around 13.5 million of Syria's population who are in need and considered to be displaced-and 4.6 million of these are in besieged or difficult to areas.

The volatile environment in Syria has led some of the telecom operators, such as MTN Syria, to restrict operations to the safer coastal areas and capital city, Damascus.

Telecommunications in Syria have become decentralized and there is reportedly damage to infrastructure and equipment. The international aid network known as the Emergency Telecommunications Cluster has been operating in Syria since 2013 and currently has 13 sites in and around Syria which provide emergency Internet connectivity and telecommunications services.

It is hoped that once the civil unrest is resolved or subsides in Syria; opportunities for telecoms growth will again arise. Syria has a reasonably high mobile penetration and many Syrians own cheap or second hand smart phones. Opportunities may exist for mobile broadband growth in the medium-term and development of Syria's fixed broadband may gather pace once the country stabilises.

Please note: due to the civil unrest in Syria, obtaining information and statistics on this market can be difficult at times and the level of destruction to telecoms infrastructure is largely unknown.

Table 1 Key telecom parameters 2013; 2016

Sector | 2013 | 2016

Subscribers to telecoms services (million): (e)

Fixed Broadband users | 0.34 | 0.71

Fixed-line telephony | 4.42 | 3.5

Mobile phone | 12.29 | 15.6

Key developments:

The years of civil unrest in Syria have taken their toll on Syria's telecommunications infrastructure and while the capital Damascus has survived reasonably well, it is the outskirts, rural and remote areas which have felt the brunt of the destruction.

With 3G/HSDPA networks in place, the focus for mobile data has firmly shifted to mobile broadband offerings.

In early 2017 reports were surfacing that a third mobile operator would enter the Syrian market.

MTN Syria has experienced recent plateau in subscriber growth due to the challenging environment.

Syriatel reported net revenue growth for FY 2016.

Companies covered in this report include:

Syrian Telecommunication Establishment (STE), MTN Syria, Syriatel.

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Ankur Gupta, Head Marketing & Communications


1. Executive Summary

2. Key statistics

2.1 Country overview

3. Telecommunications market

3.1 Historical overview

3.2 Market analysis

3.3 Market challenges

3.4 Emergency Telecommunications Cluster (ETC)

4. Regulatory environment

4.1 Historic overview

4.2 Regulatory authority

4.3 Telecom sector liberalisation in Syria

4.4 Interconnect

5. Fixed network operators in Syria

5.1 Syrian Telecommunication Establishment (STE)

6. Telecommunications infrastructure

6.1 National telecom network

7. Telecommunications infrastructure

7.1 Overview of the national telecom network

7.2 International infrastructure

8. Broadband access market

8.1 Introduction and statistical overview

8.1.1 Market analysis

8.1.2 Broadband statistics

8.1.3 Fibre-to-the-Premises (FttP) and Fibre-To-The-Home (FttH)

9. Digital economy

9.1 Introduction

9.2 e-Government

9.3 e-Health

9.4 e-Education

9.5 Social media

9.6 Broadcasting

10. Mobile communications

10.1 Market analysis

10.2 Mobile statistics

10.3 Mobile voice

10.3.1 Prepaid

10.4 Mobile data

10.4.1 SMS and MMS

10.5 Mobile broadband statistics

10.6 Regulatory issues

10.6.1 Third mobile licence

10.6.2 Current BOT contracts/Long term free hold licenses

10.7 Mobile infrastructure

10.7.1 GSM, 3G

10.7.2 Satellite mobile

11. Major mobile operators

11.1 Operators

11.1.1 Syriatel

11.1.2 MTN Syria

11.2 Mobile content and applications

11.2.1 m-banking (payments/loans)

12. Related reports

Table 1 Key telecom parameters 2013; 2016

Table 2 Country statistics Syria-2017

Table 3 Telephone network statistics 2016

Table 4 Broadband statistics Syria-2015

Table 5 Mobile statistics Syria-2016

Table 6 National telecommunications authorities

Table 7 GDP growth and inflation 2005 2017

Table 8 Fixed lines in service and teledensity 1995-2016

Table 9 Percentage of Internet users 2010-2015

Table 10 Fixed broadband subscribers 2004-2015

Table 11 International Internet bandwidth 2004-2015

Table 12 Mobile subscribers and penetration rate 1999-2016

Table 13 Active mobile broadband subscriptions 2009-2015

Table 14 Syriatel Revenue 2008-2016

Table 15 MTN Syria Revenue and CAPEX 2009 mid 2016

Table 16 MTN Syria Subscribers 2009-2016

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Syrian Telecommunication Establishment (STE), MTN Syria, Syriatel.

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