Table of Contents
Sudan's Sudatel invests $267 million in infrastructure to 2020
Sudan makes up the northern part of a country which in 2011 was separated to form the new state of South Sudan. Three quarters of the former population live in the north, where mobile market penetration is far higher. The country has a relatively well-equipped telecommunications infrastructure by regional standards, including a national fibre optic backbone and international fibre connections.
The economy has performed poorly in recent years, partly due to the effects of having lost much of its oil reserves to South Sudan and partly due to domestic volatility and social unrest. This has hindered the ability of operators to develop revenue from services and sufficiently invest in infrastructure upgrades. Sudatel during 2016 has invested in rural tower infrastructure to improve connectivity, though such measures remain far below what is required.
The national telco, Sudatel, was privatised more than a decade ago, with major shares and management control now held by Etisalat of the UAE and by Qatar Telecom. It is also listed on several regional stock exchanges. The company presided over the world's fastest growing fixed-line market until it started substituting traditional copper lines with CDMA2000 fixed-wireless access in 2005.
Competition in the fixed-line market comes from Canar Telecom, which was also majority-owned by Etisalat until Etisalat sold its 92.3% interest to the Bank of Khartoum in mid-2016. The operator also opted for CDMA2000 technology to cost effectively roll out fixed services and, like Sudatel, offers wireless broadband services through this network, having upgraded to the EV-DO standard.
Sudatel reports 17% increase in net profit for 2016;
Regulator awards 2.5GHz spectrum licence to Canar Telecom for LTE services;
Emirates sells its 92.3% stake in Canar Telecom;
Sudatel announces $267 million investment plan to 2020, contracts to build mobile towers in rural areas; launches LTA-A in Khartoum;
MTN Sudan launches HSPA+ services;
Zain Sudan launches LTE services;
Higher telecom taxes impact on sector growth; telecom networks separated between North and South Sudan;
Canar Telecom sees a continuing decline in its fixed-line market share;
Regulator concludes its SIM registration project;
Upgrade to EASSy cable enabling 10Tb/s;
Report update includes operator data to Q4 2016, recent market developments.
Market penetration rates in Sudan's telecoms sector 2016 (e)
Market | Penetration rate
Fixed-line telephony | 0.3%
Internet users | 32%
Mobile SIM (population) | 77%
Companies mentioned in this report:
Zain Sudan, MTN Sudan, Sudatel, Sudani, Canar Telecom (Canartel), SudaNet, ZinaNet, Thuraya
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