2012-09-10 06:19:15 - Iraq Telecommunications Report Q1 2012 - a new market research report on companiesandmarkets.com
BMIs Q112 Iraqs telecommunications market report provides a comprehensive overview of the latest developments to occur within the countrys mobile, fixed-line telephony and internet sectors. Our new forecast for the mobile market incorporates the latest subscriber data, published by the countrys two largest operators, Zain Iraq and Asiacell, for Q311. Data on these two operators are published by Kuwaits Zain Group and by Qatar Telecom (for Asiacell). We continue to estimate the number of subscribers served by Iraqs smaller mobile operators, including the Kurdistan-based cellco Korek Telecom. This quarter sees a slight downgrade to our mobile market forecast, and an upgrade to our ARPU forecast following Asiacells success in generating higher ARPUs. However, there is no change to our forecasts
depicting how the fixedline telephony and internet markets will develop over the next five years.
Based on the data available, we estimate that Iraq had 24.399mn mobile subscribers at the end of September 2011, reflecting a growth rate of 1.5% q-o-q and 7.2% y-o-y. This growth rate, while robust, is somewhat slower than we would normally expect from a market at the early stage of development. The four quarters to the end of September have seen average quarterly growth of 1.8%, which is a decline from 2.8% in the four quarters to the end of September 2010. However, looking ahead BMI expects stronger growth rates as a result of network expansion investments by the operators, and by an increase in competition among the operators. In the future, BMI expects competition to be the main factor driving mobile subscriber growth in Iraq. In addition to the presence of France TÃ©lÃ©com through the acquisition of a minority stake Korek Telecom, we expect the possible award of a fourth mobile licence in H112 to boost competition in the market. Our new mobile subscriber forecast for Iraq envisages just fewer than 24.9mn users at the end of 2011, equivalent to a penetration rate of 76.2%. By the end of 2016, we predict that Iraqs mobile penetration rate will have risen to 92%.
As of early November 2011, uncertainty was resolved over whether Iraqs three mobile operators would face legal action for failing to meet an August 31 deadline to sell off parts of their respective businesses through initial public offerings. Under the 15-year licences awarded to Iraqs mobile phone operators in August 2007, the cellcos were required to go public on the countrys bourse within four years. Ultimately the government agreed with operators that the Iraqi stock exchange was not ready to absorb such large listings and the deadline has been moved to August 2012.
Meanwhile, having delayed a listing that had been scheduled for 2011, Iraqi national telecoms operator Kalimat Telecom has continued its plans to launch an IPO in 2012. Kalimat, which is majority owned by Kuwaits royal family, planned to provide mobile, fixed and data services throughout Iraq by November 2011. The company currently operates in six major Iraqi cities and expects to grow its subscriber base to 3mn by the end of 2012.
As a result of a slightly lower Industry Rewards score Iraq has slipped two positions further down our table to 10th in our Business Environment Ratings for the MENA region.The price of this market report covers 4 quarterly reports on this sector. This quarterly report will be downloadable instantly as a PDF document, with the 3 remaining reports delivered at regular intervals throughout the year.
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