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Serbia - Telecoms, IP Networks, Digital Media and Forecasts

  • March 2015
  • -
  • Paul Budde Communication Pty Ltd
  • -
  • 48 pages

Spectrum auction in February 2015 encouraging for mid-year LTE launch
Following an economically and politically turbulent period during the 1990s, Serbia started the first decade of the new millennium with strong GDP growth until the economic crisis of 2008 restricted both growth and investment. GDP growth soon recovered but it has been stymied by the poor performance of Serbia's neighbouring markets including Italy and Greece.

Economic difficulties prompted the government to adopt a range of fiscal measures to raise revenue, including a short-term imposition of a 10% tax on telecom services. Similarly, the economic difficulties, compounded by a range of regulatory measures, has seen a steady fall in telecom market revenue suffered due to the recent adverse economic conditions although not all markets were affected equally.

Serbia's potential integration with the European Union (EU), formalised by the Stabilisation and Association Agreement in 2008, has encouraged the government and regulator to adopted measures aimed at promoting telecoms reform. The Agreement oversees closer integration with the EU and covers commitments to political, economic, trade, or human rights reform. In addition, as part of the EU pre-accession process, Serbia has received financial aid to build public institutions and improve cross-border co-operation.

EU reforms have been fundamental to Serbia's telecom industry. The EU's regulatory framework for communications (the NRF), adopted in mid-2010, promotes competition as the most efficient way to offer communications products and services while ensuring universal access. However, the May 2012 election of a new government less inclined to compromise with EU, though still committed to joining the Union, may have implications for telecom sector regulatory measures.

Considerable network investment has been undertaken by incumbent and alternative operators in recent years, despite economic difficulties. This has helped to stimulate internet usage, which has also been bolstered by improved affordability as prices are reduced through competition.

Serbia boasts an extensive broadcasting market, with programming available via radio and TV programme distribution via cable, wireless cable, terrestrial free-to-air and broadband TV. An analogue switch off (ASO) plan has been adopted and digital TV is widely available on cable networks.

Serbia's high mobile penetration, the result of multiple SIM card use, has seen lower revenue in recent years, placing further pressure on operators to develop business models which encourage consumer use of mobile data services as also the continued substitution of fixed-line for mobile voice calls.

Serbia - Key telecom parameters 2014 (e)
Service | Penetration
Fixed-line | 40%
Broadband | 20%
Mobile penetration | 130%
(Source: BuddeComm)
Market highlights:

The auction of spectrum in the 1800MHz band in February 2015 will stimulate the commercial launch of LTE services by mid-year.

Mid-2014 amendments to the Law on Electronic Communications stipulated the minimum set of Universal Service provisions. Several operators were designated as coming under US obligations. It also made greater emphasis on network neutrality.

Despite the government's buy-out of OTE's stake in the incumbent Telekom Serbia, there has been little interest from other players. The government expects to make a decision on the way to proceed with the process by mid-2015.

DSL still accounts for the majority of fixed broadband subscriptions. Fibre developments remain nascent, and so the onus is on the regulator to develop an appropriate access regime sympathetic to investment.

The investment firm acquired United Group in early 2014, including Serbia's SBB telecom and pay-TV provider.

From September 2014 simulcast analogue and digital TV broadcasting has been in force as Serbia continues with ASO, scheduled to be complete in mid-2015.

Data in this report is the latest available at the time of preparation and may not be for the current year.
This report provides a comprehensive overview of trends and developments in Serbia's telecommunications market. The report analyses the mobile, internet, broadband, digital TV and converging media sectors. Subjects include:
Market and industry analyses, trends and developments;
Facts, figures and statistics;
Industry and regulatory issues;
Infrastructure;
Major players, revenues, subscribers, ARPU, MoU;
Internet, VoIP, IPTV;
Mobile voice and data markets;
Broadband (FttP, DSL, cable TV, wireless);
Convergence and digital media;
3G subscriber and mobile ARPU forecasts to 2015;
Broadband market forecasts for selective years to 2020.

Key developments:
Regulator licences three MNOs for spectrum in the 1800MHz band; fixed-number portability introduced; simulcast analogue and digital TV broadcasts begin; KKR completes takeover of United Group; report update includes the regulator's market report for 2013, telcos' operating and financial data to Q4 2014; recent market developments.
Companies covered in this report include:
Mobilna Telefonija Srbija (MTS), Telekom Serbia, VIP Mobile, Telenor Serbia, Serbia Broadband (SBB)
This report is essential reading for those needing high level strategic information and objective analysis on the telecom sector in Serbia. It provides further information on:
Market liberalisation and regulatory issues;
The impact of the global economic crisis;
Telecoms operators privatisation, acquisitions, new licences;
Mobile data market developments in coming years in light of spectrum auctions and new license awards;
3G developments, regulatory issues and technologies including HSPA and LTE;
Broadband migration to an FttP architecture;
Historical and current subscriber statistics and forecasts;
ARPU statistics and forecasts.

Table Of Contents

Serbia - Telecoms, IP Networks, Digital Media and Forecasts
1. Executive summary
2. Key statistics
2.1 Country overview
2.2 Economic climate
3. Telecommunications market
3.1 Overview of Serbia's telecom market
4. Regulatory environment
4.1 Law on Electronic Communications
4.1.1 Amendments
4.2 Regulatory authorities
4.3 Telecom sector liberalisation in Serbia
4.4 Privatisation
4.4.1 Telekom Serbia
4.4.2 Mobi 63
4.5 Interconnect
4.6 Universal service
4.7 Number Portability (NP)
5. Fixed network operators in Serbia
5.1 Telekom Serbia
6. Telecommunications infrastructure
6.1 National telecom network
6.1.1 Electric Energy Transmission and Transmission System Control (EMS)
6.1.2 EPS network
6.2 International infrastructure
6.3 Telecoms and IT
7. Information society
7.1 E-commerce
7.2 E-government
8. Broadband market
8.1 Overview
8.2 Broadband statistics
8.3 Cable broadband
8.4 Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL)
8.5 Fibre-to-the-Premises (FttP) networks
8.6 Wireless broadband
8.6.1 WiMAX
8.6.2 WiFi
9. Digital media
9.1 Overview of broadcasting market
9.2 Regulatory issues
9.3 Broadband TV (IPTV)
9.4 Cable TV
9.5 Satellite-based digital pay TV developments
9.6 Digital Terrestrial TV (DTTV)
10. Mobile communications
10.1 Overview of Serbia's mobile market
10.1.1 Mobile statistics
10.2 Regulatory issues
10.2.1 Third mobile licence
10.2.2 3.4GHz 3.8GHz auction
10.2.3 1800MHz auction
10.2.4 Mobile Number Portability (MNP)
10.3 Mobile technologies
10.3.1 Digital
10.3.2 Third generation mobile
10.4 Major mobile operators
10.4.1 Telenor Serbia
10.4.2 Mobilna Telefonija Srbija (MTS)
10.4.3 VIP Mobile
10.4.4 Mobile Virtual Network operators (MVNOs)
10.5 Mobile voice services
10.5.1 Prepaid
10.6 Mobile data services
10.6.1 Short Message Service (SMS)/Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS)
10.6.2 General Packet Radio Service (GPRS)
10.6.3 Enhanced Data for GSM Evolution (EDGE)
10.6.4 Evolved High Speed Packet Access (HSPA+)
10.6.5 Long-term Evolution (LTE)
10.6.6 Mobile broadband
10.7 Mobile content and applications
11. Forecasts
11.1 Forecasts fixed broadband subscribers 2010 - 2013; 2020
11.1.1 Scenario 1 higher broadband subscriber growth
11.1.2 Scenario 2 lower broadband subscriber growth
11.2 Notes on scenario forecasts
12. Related reports
Table 1 Country statistics 2014 (e)
Table 2 Telephone network statistics 2014 (e)
Table 3 Internet subscribers 2014 (e)
Table 4 Broadband statistics 2014 (e)
Table 5 Mobile statistics 2014 (e)
Table 6 National telecommunications authority
Table 7 Telecom market revenue by sector 2008 2013
Table 8 Share of telecom revenue by service 2010 - 2013
Table 9 Share of telecom investment by service 2010 - 2013
Table 10 Fixed-line telephony revenue 2004 - 2013
Table 11 Telekom Serbia Group financial data 2007 - 2013
Table 12 Telekom Serbia financial data 2009 - 2013
Table 13 Telekom Serbia Group subscribers by sector 2009 - 2013
Table 14 Telekom Serbia company subscribers by sector 2010 - 2013
Table 15 Telekom Serbia Group investments by sector (old style) 2010 - 2012
Table 16 Telekom Serbia Group investments by segment 2012 - 2013
Table 17 Telekom Serbia company investments by sector 2010 - 2013
Table 18 Fixed lines in service and teledensity 2004 - 2015
Table 19 Annual requests for new fixed lines 2004 - 2014
Table 20 VoIP users and traffic 2010 - 2013
Table 21 Fixed line traffic 2004 - 2014
Table 22 Total international internet bandwidth 2004 - 2013
Table 23 Subscribers to broadband services by data rate 2014
Table 24 ISPs by access platform 2008 - 2013
Table 25 Internet subscribers and penetration rates 2004 - 2014
Table 26 Household internet penetration by connection type 2007 - 2013
Table 27 Internet market revenue 2005 - 2013
Table 28 Dial-up internet connections 2007 - 2014
Table 29 Fixed-line broadband penetration rate 2005 - 2013
Table 30 Cable broadband subscribers 2004 - 2015
Table 31 DSL subscribers 2004 - 2015
Table 32 Telekom Serbia ADSL subscribers 2008 - 2013
Table 33 Wireless internet subscribers 2007 - 2012
Table 34 Pay TV subscribers 2007 - 2013
Table 35 Pay TV subscribers by platform 2010 - 2013
Table 36 Proportion of Pay TV subscribers by platform 2009 - 2013
Table 37 Pay TV market revenue 2005 - 2013
Table 38 Pay TV revenue share by platform 2010 - 2013
Table 39 Pay TV operator market share by subscribers 2008 - 2013
Table 40 Telekom Serbia IPTV subscribers 2008 - 2013
Table 41 Cable TV subscribers and penetration 2008 - 2014
Table 42 Proportion of digital and analogue cable TV subscribers 2011 - 2014
Table 43 Mobile market revenue 2003 - 2014
Table 44 Historic - Mobile subscribers and penetration rate 1998 - 2004
Table 45 Mobile subscribers and penetration rate 2005 - 2014
Table 46 Mobile phone usage by individuals 2006 - 2014
Table 47 Total outgoing mobile traffic 2003 - 2014
Table 48 Mobile operator market share by subscribers 2003 - 2013
Table 49 Mobile operator market share by revenue 2003 - 2013
Table 50 Average mobile number portings per month 2011 - 2013
Table 51 Annual and cumulative mobile number portings 2011 - 2013
Table 52 MNO network coverage 2013
Table 53 Telenor subscribers 2006 - 2014
Table 54 Telenor financial data (mobile) 2007 - 2014
Table 55 Telenor prepaid and postpaid ARPU and MOU 2007 - 2014
Table 56 MTS subscribers 2008 - 2013
Table 57 VIP Mobile financial data 2007 - 2014
Table 58 VIP Mobile subscribers 2007 2014
Table 59 Proportion of prepaid mobile users 2005 - 2014
Table 60 Telenor prepaid users 2007 - 2014
Table 61 MTS Serbia prepaid users 2012 - 2013
Table 62 Total SMS and MMS messages sent 2003 - 2013
Table 63 Mobile internet and 3G subscribers 2007 - 2013
Table 64 Forecast fixed broadband subscribers higher growth scenario 2010 - 2013; 2020
Table 65 Forecast fixed broadband subscribers lower growth scenario 2010 - 2013; 2020
Chart 1 Telekom Serbia Group financial data 2007 2013
Chart 2 Telekom Serbia financial data 2009 2013
Chart 3 Fixed lines in service and teledensity 2004 2015
Chart 4 Household internet penetration by connection type 2007 2013
Chart 5 Telekom Serbia ADSL subscribers 2008 2013
Chart 6 Pay TV subscribers 2007 2013
Chart 7 Cable TV subscribers and penetration 2008 2014
Chart 8 Mobile subscribers and penetration rate 2005 2014
Chart 9 Mobile operator market share by subscribers 2003 2013
Chart 10 Telenor financial data (mobile) 2007 2014
Chart 11 Telenor prepaid and postpaid ARPU and MOU 2007 2014
Chart 12 VIP Mobile financial data 2007 2014

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