Egypt to have more mobile than fixed lines by 2005
Egypt’s GSM and fixed revenues are expected to exceed $3.17 billion by 2006, up by $1.3 billion from revenues in 2001, predicts a newly released report from the Arab Advisors Group. PSTN revenues will make up 41 percent of total revenues in 2006, down from 45 percent in 2001. PSTN penetration in Egypt is projected to grow from 10 percent to more than 14 percent by 2006. In parallel, GSM penetration is projected to almost reach 17 percent by 2006.
The Egyptian Telecommunications regulatory landscape is currently undergoing a fourth regulatory phase. This phase will end with the liberalization of all communications markets by 2005. Telecom Egypt’s monopoly over PSTN and International connectivity is expected to end by 2005. Subsequently the GSM operators, are expected to lobby for installing their own international switches.
The report found that Egypt, the largest Arab communications market, is undergoing some fundamental changes by way of liberalization and privatization. “The partial privatization of Telecom Egypt remains on the cards but has been delayed several times. The adverse global equity market conditions narrows the maneuvering space for the Egyptian government as it seeks a strategic partner for the government owned telecom mammoth,” according to Shahin Shahin, Arab Advisors Analyst.
“Fears of massive job losses at the operator also add to the uncertainty. Telecom Egypt is expected to launch the country’s third GSM license in 2003, which heightens the need for global expertise at its helm in order not to repeat its failed GSM experiment before 1998.” Shahin added.
“The new telecom law, currently under review, directly refers to BOT (build-operate-transfer) and BOO (build-own operate) models. This will open the door for more domestic and foreign private sectors’ involvements in the Egyptian telecom infrastructure projects. A BOT agreement for deploying some 1.5 million WLL by 2007 is currently being finalized between the ministry and a private consortium. Telecom Egypt will receive revenue sharing proceeds and the venture will not compete with Telecom Egypt.” The report noted. — (menareport.com)
© 2002 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)