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Belarus government again initiates sale of its 51percent stake in BeltelecomBelarus experience strong economic growth during the first years of the century, though this stalled during the financial crisis of 2008 and 2010. In recent years growth has fallen sharply, and was expected to be negative for 2015 as the country feels the continuing effects of economic difficulties experienced by its main trading partners Ukraine and Russia. Although inflation has been brought down to more manageable levels since the hyper-inflationary year of 2011, when inflation reached 109percent; inflation during 2015 has been running at about 20percent while the value of the rouble has fallen in relation to other currencies, including the Euro. This has impacted operator revenue, particular for the subsidiaries of Turkcell and Telecom Austria. The ongoing economic difficulties have also reduced customer spend, contributing to lower revenue and investment.
Nevertheless, there remain many opportunities for growth in coming years, particularly in broadband segment where penetration is relatively low. Although the sector has been reformed in recent years, restructuring has not yet resulted in the privatisation of the incumbent Beltelecom, which has invested substantially in infrastructure and technologies. Although the government is keen to control these assets, there is greater pressure for it to sell state enterprises in a bid to reduce overall debt. Growth for Beltelecom is expected to be particularly strong in the FttP sector, where much of the companys capex is directed.
The mobile sector has experienced the strongest growth in telecoms, with a rapid rise in mobile penetration attributed to effective competition. Operators have concentrated on developing mobile broadband and data services with a view to capitalising on such services to increase ARPU. Recent spectrum auctions have facilitated the development of mobile broadband access, particularly in rural areas.
In early 2015 the government decreed that the 1.5percent tax on revenue derived from telcos (which was put in place in 2007) should be channelled to developing telecom universe services, particularly aimed at rural areas.
Although the government has repeatedly failed to sell its 51percent stake in MTS, with no bids having being filed during an attempt made in 2014, in October 2015 the sale was again put on the table. As before, the sale is largely motivated by financial considerations as the government strives to reduce debt.
Market penetration rates in Belaruss telecoms sector - 2015 (e)
Telco tax of 1.5percent of revenue allocated to the provision of universal telecom services;
Beltelecom signs up 500,000 subscribers to its GPON network by October 2015;
beCloud prepares for wholesale LTE service launch;
Government again considers plan to sell the states interest in Mobile TeleSystems (MTS);
International transmission capacity has grown in line with rising internet usage. By early 2015 capacity had reached 780Gb/s.
ADNs Ethernet-based network, originally deployed in Minsk, now has over 100,000 customers;
Report update includes Ministry of Communications data for 2014, operator data to Q2 2015, recent market developments.
Companies mentioned in this report:
Beltelecom, Cosmos TV, Minsk TV and Information Networks (MTIS), Teleradio, Belcel, MDC, MTS Belarus, BeST.
Table of Contents
1. Executive summary
2. Key statistics
3. Telecommunications market
3.1 Overview of Belaruss telecom market
4. Regulatory environment
4.1 Historic overview
4.2 Regulatory authority
4.3 Telecom sector liberalisation in Belarus
5. Fixed network operators
5.2 Alternative Digital Network (ADN)
6. Telecommunications infrastructure
6.1 National telecom network
6.2 International infrastructure
7. Broadband market
7.1 Market analysis
7.1.1 Internet society
7.1.2 Regulatory issues
7.2 Broadband statistics
7.3 Forecasts - broadband subscribers - 2015; 2017; 2020
7.3.1 Scenario 1 - higher fixed broadband subscriber growth
7.3.2 Scenario 2 - lower fixed broadband subscriber growth
7.3.3 Notes on scenario forecasts
7.4 Bitstream access: DSL and cable networks
7.5 Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) networks
7.6 Fibre-to-the-Premises (FttP)
7.7 Other fixed broadband services
7.7.1 Wireless broadband
8. Digital economy
8.2 Digital media
8.2.1 Broadband TV (IPTV)
8.2.2 Cable TV
8.2.3 Digital Terrestrial TV (DTTV)
8.2.4 Video-on-Demand (VoD)
9. Mobile communications
9.1 Market analysis
9.2 Mobile statistics
9.2.1 General statistics
9.2.2 Mobile data services
9.3 Regulatory issues
9.3.2 Radio frequency usage fees
9.3.3 Mobile Termination Rates (MTRs)
9.3.5 Mobile Number Portability (MNP)
9.4 Mobile infrastructure
9.4.1 Digital networks
9.4.2 Other infrastructure developments
9.5 Major mobile operators
9.5.2 Mobile Digital Communications (MDC)/Velcom
9.5.3 Mobile TeleSystems (MTS)
9.5.4 BeST/life :)
9.5.6 Mobile broadband
9.6 Mobile content and applications
9.6.1 Mobile TV
10. Related reports
Table 1 - Country statistics Belarus - 2015 (e)
Table 2 - Telephone network statistics - 2015 (e)
Table 3 - Internet user statistics - 2014 (e)
Table 4 - Broadband subscriber statistics - 2015 (e)
Table 5 - Mobile statistics - 2015 (e)
Table 6 - National telecommunications authority
Table 7 - Beltelecom subscribers by sector - 2011 - 2013
Table 8 - Historic - Fixed lines in service and teledensity - 1999 - 2004
Table 9 - Fixed lines in service and teledensity - 2005 - 2016
Table 10 - Total international internet bandwidth - 2000 - 2014
Table 11 - ICT value add revenue and investment - 2011 - 2014
Table 12 - ICT revenue and investment - 2011 - 2014
Table 13 - Internet users, subscribers and penetration rates - 2000 - 2015
Table 14 - Proportion of internet connections by type - 2011 - 2014
Table 15 - Proportion of internet connections by type among ICT organisations - 2011 - 2014
Table 16 - Fixed-line broadband subscribers and penetration rate - 2005 - 2016
Table 17 - Forecast fixed broadband subscribers - higher growth scenario - 2015; 2017; 2020
Table 18 - Forecast fixed broadband subscribers - lower growth scenario - 2015; 2017; 2020
Table 19 - ADSL subscribers - 2004 - 2015
Table 20 - Beltelecom DSL subscribers - 2008 - 2014
Table 21 - E-government interaction by companies - 2011 - 2014
Table 22 - Historic - Mobile subscribers and penetration rate - 1999 - 2004
Table 23 - Mobile subscribers and penetration rate - 2005 - 2016
Table 24 - MDC financial data - 2007 - 2015
Table 25 - MDC postpaid, prepaid and blended annualised ARPU - 2007 - 2015
Table 26 - MDC subscribers, monthly minutes of use (MOU) - 2007 - 2015
Table 27 - MDC prepaid users and share of total - 2007 - 2015
Table 28 - MDC mobile broadband subscribers - 2012 - 2015
Table 29 - MTS Belarus subscribers - 2004 - 2015
Table 30 - MTS Belarus operational data and ARPU ($) - 2004 - 2009
Table 31 - MTS Belarus operational data and ARPU (RUB) - 2010 - 2015
Table 32 - BeST financial data - 2010 - 2015
Table 33 - BeST mobile subscribers - 2009 - 2015
Table 34 - Active mobile broadband subscribers and penetration - 2010 - 2016
Chart 1 - Fixed lines in service and teledensity - 2005 - 2016
Chart 2 - Mobile subscribers and penetration rate - 2005 - 2016
Chart 3 - MDC financial data - 2007 - 2015
Chart 4 - MDC postpaid, prepaid and blended annualised ARPU - 2007 - 2015
Chart 5 - MDC prepaid users and share of total- 2007 - 2015
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