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El Salvador - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

Published By :

BuddeComm

Published Date : Apr 2018

Category :

Telecommunications

No. of Pages : 36 Pages

El Salvador selects ISDB-Tb standard for DTTV services
El Salvador has a small economy and population, while growth in its telecom sector has been restricted by poor infrastructure and unequal income distribution. There have been organisational delays which have retarded the development of DTTV and LTE services, though into 2017 much progress in these areas has been evident. Indeed the telecom sector has been one of the more successful within the overall economy.

El Salvador’s fixed-line teledensity is substantially lower than the Latin American and Caribbean average. However, there has been a significant drop in the number of fixed lines since 2010, largely due to the substitution for mobile-only alternatives.

Mobile penetration is remarkably high considering El Salvador’s economic indicators, being about a third higher than average for Latin America and the Caribbean. Of the estimated total number of telephones in the country, 10% are fixed and 90% are mobile. The country was one of the last in the region to provide LTE services. This was mainly due to the inadequate provision of suitable spectrum. A multi-spectrum auction is expected later in 2017 which will allow the mobile network operators to improve the reach and quality of their LTE offerings. Movistar by mid-2017 offered LTE to all provincial capitals, while Tigo is investing up to $1 billion in network infrastructure to extend LTE to 80% of the population by 2020. The switch from analogue to digital broadcasting, though delayed, will also release valuable spectrum in the 700MHz band for mobile broadband use.

El Salvador’s telecom legislation is one of the more liberal in Latin America, encouraging competition in most aspects of the telecoms sector and permitting foreign investment in all areas. However, there are no regulations as yet which promote wholesale broadband, and thus in the DSL market Claro retains a virtual monopoly. The only effective cross-platform competition in the broadband market comes from the few cable operators. There has been some market consolidation in recent years, and in mid-2017 the regulator stepped in to enforce provisions related to the proposed acquisition by Telemóvil of the regional cable TV provider Caribena Cable.

Through this process of consolidation a few dominant multinational operators have emerged (notably Millicom’s Tigo, América Móvil’s Claro, and Telefónica’s Movistar), which have managed to expand into almost all sectors through a process of convergence.

The mobile market is served by five operators: Tigo, Movistar, Claro, Digicel, and Intelfon. The outlook is especially promising for mobile broadband, where competition between Claro, Tigo, and Telefónica will oblige the operators to diversify services and reduce prices.

Key developments:

  • Regulator again consults on delayed AWS band auction;
  • Competition authority imposes conditions for Telemóvil’s proposed acquisition of Caribena Cable;
  • Number Portability gains customer popularity;
  • Digicel expands reach of HSPA+ services;
  • Government increases tax on some telecom services to 18%;
  • ASO to be completed by end-2018;
  • Central Reserve Bank finalises regulatory framework for mobile financial services; enabling a range of m-payment services via subsidiary companies set up by MNOs;
  • Tigo rebrands cable, broadband and pay-TV services as ‘Tigo Star’;
  • Mobile network operators invest to provide near national mobile broadband coverage;
  • Report update includes the regulator’s market data updates to December 2016, telcos’ financial and operating data to Q4 2017, recent market developments.

Companies mentioned in this report:

América Móvil (Claro), Millicent International (Tigo), Telefónica (Movistar), Red, GCA Telecom, Salnet, Amnet, Sky TV.

Table of Contents

1. Executive summary

2. Key statistics

3. Country overview

4. Telecommunications market

4.1 Market analysis

5. Regulatory environment
5.1 Regulatory authority
5.2 Telecom sector liberalisation
5.3 Privatisation of Antel
5.4 DR-CAFTA

6. Fixed network operators
6.1 Introduction
6.2 Claro (América Móvil)
6.3 Movistar (Telefónica)

7. Telecommunications infrastructure
7.1 Overview of the national telecom network
7.2 International infrastructure
7.2.1 Interconnection with other Central American countries
7.2.2 Submarine cable networks
7.2.3 Satellite networks

8. Wholesale

9. Fixed-line broadband market

9.1 Market analysis
9.2 Broadband statistics
9.3 Wireless Local Loop (WLL)
9.3.1 Tigo (Millicom)

10. Mobile market
10.1 Market analysis
10.2 Mobile statistics
10.3 Mobile data
10.4 Mobile broadband
10.5 Regulatory issues
10.5.1 Number Portability (NP)
10.5.2 Mobile Termination Rates (MTRs)
10.5.3 Spectrum auctions
10.6 Mobile infrastructure
10.6.1 Digital networks
10.6.2 Other infrastructure developments
10.7 Major mobile operators
10.7.1 Tigo (Millicom)
10.7.2 Claro (América Móvil)
10.7.3 Movistar (Telefónica Móviles)
10.7.4 Digicel
10.7.5 Intelfon
10.8 Mobile content and applications
10.8.1 Money transfer, m-banking

11. Related reports

List of Table

Table 1 – Country statistics El Salvador – 2017
Table 2 – Telephone network statistics – 2017 (e)
Table 3 – Internet user statistics – 2017 (e)
Table 4 – Broadband statistics – 2017 (e)
Table 5 – Mobile statistics – 2017 (e)
Table 6 – National telecommunications authority
Table 7 – Evolution of GDP in El Salvador – 2000 - 2017
Table 8 – Telecom revenue by sector – 2013 - 2015
Table 9 – Historic - Claro fixed lines in service – 2003 - 2007
Table 10 – Historical - Fixed lines in service and teledensity – 1997 - 2009
Table 11 – Fixed lines in service and teledensity – 2010 - 2018
Table 12 – International bandwidth – 2001 – 2016
Table 13 – Historic - Internet users and penetration rate – 1996 - 2009
Table 14 – Internet users and penetration rate – 2010- 2018
Table 15 – Broadband subscribers and penetration rates – 2002 – 2018
Table 16 – DSL subscribers – 2003 - 2017
Table 17 – Cable broadband subscribers – 2014 - 2015
Table 18 – Fibre and other broadband subscribers – 2013 - 2016
Table 19 – Fixed broadband connections by access speed – 2012 - 2015
Table 20 – Historic - Mobile subscribers and penetration rate – 1997 - 2009
Table 21 – Mobile subscribers and penetration rate – 2010 - 2018
Table 22 – Mobile operators’ market share – 2003 - 2012
Table 23 – Prepaid/postpaid ratio – 2002 - 2015
Table 24 – Prepaid/postpaid subscribers – 2008 - 2015
Table 25 – SMS traffic – 2013 - 2015
Table 26 – MMS traffic – 2013 - 2015
Table 27 – Active mobile broadband subscribers – 2009 - 2018
Table 28 – Mobile broadband subscribers by data rate – 2013 - 2015
Table 29 – Tigo – mobile subscribers – 1997 – 2017
Table 30 – Tigo mobile financial data – 1997 – 2017
Table 31 – Historic - Claro – mobile subscribers – 2002 - 2008
Table 32 – Historic - Movistar – mobile subscribers – 2000 - 2008
Table 33 – Digicel – mobile subscribers – 2003 – 2008; 2014 - 2015
Table 34 – Digicel revenue – 2012; 2014 - 2015
Table 35 – Historic - RED – mobile subscribers – 2005 - 2008

List of Chart

Chart 1 – Fixed lines in service and teledensity – 2005 – 2018
Chart 2 – Internet users and penetration rate – 2005- 2018
Chart 3 – Broadband subscribers and penetration rates – 2002 – 2018
Chart 4 – Mobile subscribers and penetration rate – 2005 – 2018
Chart 5 – Active mobile broadband subscribers – 2009 – 2018
Exhibit 1 – Tigo/Telemóvil – company history

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