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Published on July 24th, 2006 | by Babar Bhatti


Teledensity growth in Pakistan almost double in FY 2006

According to recently released numbers on the teledensity (a term commonly used to describe the number of telephone lines per 100 people) the growth in Pakistan telecom sector shows no sign of slowing down.

According to a recent report in Business Recorder the teledensity has reached over 26%. This is quite remarkable given the situation a few years ago. As the article notes the cellular and Wireless local loop (WLL) segments have shown the highest growth rates.

“It is interesting to note that cellular users accounts for around 85 percent of the total telecom subscribers in Pakistan. The remaining 15 percent are using fixed line (wireline and wireless). In India, about 68 percent of the total subscribers are mobile users with teledensity of 13.5 percent as of May 2006”

Wireless local loop is a new technology which has grown in popularity due to its portability and convenience. WLL is a system that connects subscribers to the public switched telephone network (PSTN) using radio signals as a substitute for copper for all or part of the connection between the subscriber and the switch. This includes cordless access systems, proprietary fixed radio access, and fixed cellular systems. Telecommunication analysts agree that WLL will stir competition for phone service in the developing countries. The article notes

“The WLL, relatively a new phenomenon in Pakistan, has posted gigantic growth of 284 percent with 1.03 million subscribers by FY06 versus that of 0.27 million a year ago. The PTCL, the largest player in WLL, gained its market share from 61 percent in FY05 to 64 percent in FY06. While Telecard, the second largest player, has lost its market share to 22 percent from 37 percent in FY05. The PTA awarded two more licenses of LDI making total number of LDI operators to 14. Here also, increased competition was observed leading to price war-like situation amongst the players.”

Read the full article here

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