Since its launch in the Moroccan market in November 2003, ADSL subscribers’ base grew at a phenomenal rate reaching 0.331 million by end of June 2006. ADSL market grew by 97.0% during the second quarter of 2006 alone far outstripping that of the total Internet subscribers’ growth of 8.2%. This is due to internal churn from dialup and leased lines into ADSL for cost savings. Morocco’s Internet accounts penetration in Morocco currently stands at 1.12%.
The Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in Morocco do not require full-fledged licenses. Instead, any ISP in the country should obtain a declaration from the ANRT, the telecommunications regulator. These declarations have to be renewed on a yearly basis. The ANRT then forwards a copy of this declaration to the concerned governmental agencies. The declaration is essentially a class license that applicants can get with relative ease.
A new report, “Morocco Internet and Datacomm Landscape” was released to the Arab Advisors Group’s Telecoms Strategic Research Service subscribers on August 24, 2006. The 54-page report, which has 65 detailed exhibits, provides a detailed analysis of the Moroccan Internet and datacomm markets and profiles the operational ISPs in the country. The report includes 5-year historical and 5-year projections on Internet uptake and revenues. The report provides, moreover, a detailed and comprehensive picture on the Internet market strategies and regulations, e-commerce, and online content and services landscape.
The first Internet connection was established in Morocco by Maroc Télécom in 1995. Between 1997 and 2000, Morocco has seen the creation of many ISPs, which have subsequently consolidated around two major players: Maroc Télécom’s Menara Internet service and Maroc Connect’s Wanadoo-branded service. Presently, there are 10,051 holders of Internet declarations in the country, of whom 4,190 enlisted in 2005. The vast majority of which are Internet cafés and four broadband providing ISPs, namely: Maroc Télécom, Maroc Connect, and two smaller ones: Morocco Trade and Development Services SA (MTDS) and Maghreb Net.
Internet accounts in Morocco grew at a healthy CAGR of 49.16% between 2001 to 2005. Despite this, Internet penetration in Morocco is still very low by absolute and relative standards.
“With upcoming infrastructure-based competition of multiple fixed operators and lower Internet bandwidth costs, the Arab Advisors Group projects that the Moroccan Internet market will grow at a healthy 2006-2010 CAGR of 29.8%.” Ms. Mirna Sunna, Arab Advisors Research Analyst wrote in the report.