Published on July 8th, 2009 | by Babar Bhatti8
Distribution Of Cellular Telecom Services In Provinces
We often talk about the overall growth of mobile telecom in Pakistan but in reality the growth is not even everywhere in the country. In this post we take a look at the geographic spread across different provinces and regions. Let’s start with tele-density, which means the number of phones per 100 persons. The chart below shows how tele-density changed in the 4 provinces from December 2007 to December 2008 (Source: PTA). Sindh leads with a tele-density of 64%, most probably because of the commercial nature of Karachi. Balochistan on the other hand has only 25% cellular penetration, most likely attributable to few urban areas and high cost of infrastructure. With the recent USF projects the situation may improve a bit as more under-served areas are getting access.
Next, let’s look at how the subscribers of mobile telecom companies are distributed across 4 provinces? The table below shows the numbers for Dec 2008. As expected Mobilink leads everywhere except AJK where Telenor has the most subscribers. Warid and Zong have most of their subscriber base in Punjab and Sindh and very few in NWFP and Balochistan. Based on this it is clear that Ufone, Telenor and Mobilink are the only true national players.
It would be interesting to see a similar breakdown of broadband services by each province. I think that the digital divide will be deeper for broadband.