Kuwait’s Mobile Subscribers Projected to Reach 4.37 Million from 2008 to 2012
As The Kuwaiti cellular market awaits the launch of the third mobile operator Viva by the end of 2008. A new report from Arab Advisors Group titled “Kuwait Communications Projections Report “, projects cellular subscribers to grow at a CAGR of 9.4% from 2008 to 2012, reaching 4.37 million and a penetration rate of 97.2%. Kuwait’s telecom market is still firmly in government hands.
The Ministry of Communications (MOC) solely operates Kuwait’s fixed telecommunications network and is also the regulatory entity for the telecommunications sector in the country. Development plans are issued by the MOC.
There are currently two mobile operators Zain and Wataniya (Qatar Telecom (Qtel) acquired 51% 2007). Parliament’s approval is essential for matters pertaining to operating licenses, liberalization policies and privatization issues.
The Kuwaiti government owns minority interest in all cellular operators, while the Internet market is completely served by private sector companies. Samer Abbas, Senior research analyst of Arab Advisors Group wrote in the report.
The cellular market in Kuwait continues to grow steadily. Cellular subscribers reached 2.77 million in 2007; a penetration rate of 81.6%. With the entrance of the STC-led third mobile operator and as full competition starts, the Arab Advisors Group expects the operators to engage in tariff competition. This will drive market growth going forward and drop monthly ARPU. We project cellular subscribers to grow at a CAGR of 9.4% from 2008 to 2012, reaching 4.37 million and a penetration rate of 97.2%.
Outgoing international calling traffic and revenues through the MOC’s exchanges declined slightly in 2007. After a recovery in 2006, outgoing international calls went down again by 5.3% in 2007, to reach 214 million calls. Owing to the massive cellular subscriber base in Kuwait, the vast majority of international calls originate from mobile lines. In 2007, mobile lines accounted for 90% of outgoing international calls and 86.4% of outgoing international call minutes.