Cover Image
Market Research Report

Liberia - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

Published by BuddeComm Product code 960337
Published Content info 91 Pages
Delivery time: 1-2 business days
Price
Back to Top
Liberia - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses
Published: August 25, 2020 Content info: 91 Pages
Description

Liberia's government to allow Libtelco to enter the mobile market

After more than a decade of civil war which destroyed much of its infrastructure, Liberia became a prime example of an almost entirely wireless telecommunications market. There are two mobile operators - MTN Liberia, majority owned by MTN Group, and Orange Liberia, the local unit of Orange Group. Both have steadily invested in network infrastructure while MTN Liberia has been active in promoting its m-money services in a country where most people are un-banked.

Competition between these operators has led to a reduction in pricing for voice and data services, and since this impacted on tax revenue the regulator was prompted in mid-2019 to impose a tariff floor.

Internet services are available from a number of wireless ISPs as well as the mobile operators. The high cost and limited bandwidth of connections means that internet access is expensive and penetration rates are very low. Although additional bandwidth is available from an international submarine cable, considerable investment is still needed in domestic fixed-line infrastructure before end-users can make full use of the cable.

The harmonisation of a disorderly mobile licensing and spectrum allocation regime has caused some difficulties, and market penetration remains low compared to other countries in the region. Penetration has also been affected by SIM card registration requirements imposed in recent years.

The privatisation of the long neglected incumbent telco Liberia Telecommunications Corporation (Libtelco) failed in 2005 though efforts to resuscitate the company have continued. As part of the efforts, the government has proposed amendments to the Telecommunications Act which would enable the telco to enter the mobile market, though its potential effectiveness as a competitor to MTN and Orange is doubtful.

The market is ineffectively monitored by the telecom regulator, which lacks the resources, technical expertise and documentation to enforce its orders. As a result, a number of operators are able to avoid paying fees to the government and have continued to operate despite the regulator's rulings that they must close down their services.

BuddeComm notes that the outbreak of the Coronavirus in 2020 is having a significant impact on production and supply chains globally. During the coming year the telecoms sector to various degrees is likely to experience a downturn in mobile device production, while it may also be difficult for network operators to manage workflows when maintaining and upgrading existing infrastructure. Overall progress towards 5G may be postponed or slowed down in some countries.

On the consumer side, spending on telecoms services and devices is under pressure from the financial effect of large-scale job losses and the consequent restriction on disposable incomes. However, the crucial nature of telecom services, both for general communication as well as a tool for home-working, will offset such pressures. In many markets the net effect should be a steady though reduced increased in subscriber growth.

Although it is challenging to predict and interpret the long-term impacts of the crisis as it develops, these have been acknowledged in the industry forecasts contained in this report.

The report also covers the responses of the telecom operators as well as government agencies and regulators as they react to the crisis to ensure that citizens can continue to make optimum use of telecom services. This can be reflected in subsidy schemes and the promotion of tele-health and tele-education, among other solutions.

Key developments:

  • JamCell awarded Liberia's third MNO licence;
  • Regulator tightens SIM card registration scheme, imposes price floor on mobile voice and data services;
  • Government preps to amend legislation to enable Libtelco to enter the mobile market;
  • MNOs again investigated for poor QoS;
  • Global Voice Group (GVG) delivers International Gateway Management System;
  • Regulator to receive portion of operator revenue under new payment regime;
  • Libtelco launches first phase of its fibre network in tie-up to the ACE cable system;
  • Report update includes telcos' operating data to Q2 2020, Telecom Maturity Index charts and analyses, assessment of the global impact of COVID-19 on the telecoms sector, recent market developments.

Companies mentioned in this report:

Liberia Telecommunications Corporation (LTC, Libtelco), MTN Liberia (LoneStar), Cellcom, Comium (Novafone), LiberCell, Globacom, West Africa Telecom (WAT).

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Key statistics

Regional Africa Market Comparison

  • TMI vs GDP
  • Mobile and mobile broadband
  • Fixed and mobile broadband

Country overview

COVID-19 and its impact on the telecom sector

  • Economic considerations and responses
  • Mobile devices
  • Subscribers
  • Infrastructure

Telecommunications market

  • Historical overview

Regulatory environment

  • Overview
  • Regulatory authority
  • Fixed-line developments
    • Liberia Telecommunications Act
    • ICT Policy and ICT Act
    • Privatisation
    • International gateways
    • Universal Access Program (UAP)
    • Universal licence
  • Mobile network developments
    • Licence reform
    • GSM spectrum reallocation
    • Mobile Termination Rates (MTRs)
    • SIM card registration
    • Roaming
    • Tariffs

Mobile market

  • Market analysis
  • Mobile infrastructure
    • 4G (LTE)
    • 3G
    • Mobile broadband
  • Major mobile operators
    • MTN Liberia (LoneStar)
    • Orange Liberia (Cellcom)
    • Novafone GSM (Comium)
    • LiberCell
    • JamCell
  • Mobile content and applications
    • Agricultural Market Information and Linkage System (AMILS)
    • m-health
    • m-money

Fixed broadband market

  • Introduction and statistical overview
    • Broadband statistics
    • Fixed wireless (Wi-Fi and WiMAX)

Fixed-line operators

  • Liberia Telecommunication Corporation (LTC, Libtelco)
  • West Africa Telecom (WAT)

Telecommunications infrastructure

  • Overview of the national telecom network
  • International infrastructure
    • Satellite
    • Submarine fibre

Appendix - Historic data

Glossary of abbreviations

Related reports

List of Tables

  • Table 1 - Top Level Country Statistics and Telco Authorities - Liberia - 2020 (e)
  • Table 2 - Growth in the number of mobile subscribers and penetration - 2010 - 2025
  • Table 3 - Growth in the number of active mobile broadband subscribers - 2010 - 2025
  • Table 4 - Change in the number of MTN Liberia subscribers, ARPU - 2010 - 2020
  • Table 5 - Growth in the number of MTN Liberia's mobile data subscribers - 2016 - 2020
  • Table 6 - Development of MTN Liberia's financial data (ZAR million) - 2013 - 2020
  • Table 7 - Change in MTN Liberia's mobile usage - 2013 - 2020
  • Table 8 - Change in the number of Orange Liberia's mobile subscribers - 2012 - 2020
  • Table 9 - Growth in the number of MTN Liberia's m-money subscribers - 2018 - 2020
  • Table 10 - Growth in the number of fixed broadband subscribers in Liberia - 2010 - 2025
  • Table 11 - Fixed lines in service and teledensity - 2010 - 2025
  • Table 12 - Fixed lines in service and teledensity - 2010 - 2025
  • Table 13 - Historic - Fixed lines in service and teledensity in Liberia - 1999 - 2009
  • Table 14 - Historic - Mobile subscribers and penetration - 2001 - 2009
  • Table 15 -Historic - International internet bandwidth - 2008 - 2016
  • Table 16 - Historic - Internet users and penetration rate in Liberia - 1999 - 2009
  • Table 17 -Historic - MTN Liberia subscribers, ARPU - 2005 - 2009
  • Table 18 - Historic - SMS traffic - 2008 - 2013
  • Table 19 - Historic - Novafone mobile subscribers - 2013 - 2016
  • Table 20 - Historic - Internet users and penetration rate in Liberia - 2010 - 2015

List of Charts

  • Chart 1 - Overall Africa view - Telecoms Maturity Index vs GDP per Capita
  • Chart 2 - West Africa - Telecoms Maturity Index vs GDP per capita
  • Chart 3 - Africa - Bottom-tier Telecoms Maturity Index (Market Emergents)
  • Chart 4 - West Africa -Telecoms Maturity Index by country
  • Chart 5 - West Africa mobile subscriber penetration versus mobile broadband penetration
  • Chart 6 - West Africa fixed and mobile penetration rates
  • Chart 7 - Growth in the number of mobile subscribers and penetration - 2010 - 2025
  • Chart 8 - Growth in the number of active mobile subscribers and penetration - 2013 - 2025
  • Chart 9 - Change in the number of MTN Liberia subscribers, ARPU - 2010 - 2020
  • Chart 10 - Growth in the number of MTN Liberia's mobile data subscribers - 2016 - 2020
  • Chart 11 - Development of MTN Liberia's financial data (ZAR million) - 2013 - 2020
  • Chart 12 - Change in the number of Orange Liberia's mobile subscribers - 2012 - 2020
  • Chart 13 - Growth in the number of MTN Liberia's m-money subscribers - 2018 - 2020

List of Exhibits

  • Exhibit 1 - Generalised Market Characteristics by Market Segment
  • Exhibit 2 - West Africa - Key Characteristics of Telecoms Markets by Country
  • Exhibit 3 - Map of Liberia
Back to Top