Telcos investment up 119pc: Potraz

HARARE - Total investment in the local postal and telecommunications sector surged 119,3 percent from $3 124 692 in the second quarter of 2015 to $6,8 million, data from the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (Potraz) has shown.

Figures in the Potraz Abridged Postal and Telecommunications Sector Performance Report released on Tuesday attributed the surge to increased penetration.

“Internet access providers (IAPs) generated a total of $33,9 million in the second quarter of 2015, representing a 0,8 percent increase from the $33,7 million recorded in the previous quarter,” Potraz said.

Investment by IAPs also increased by 85,9 percent to record $15.3 million from $8,2 million recorded in the previous quarter.

Revenue in the sector decreased four percent from $262,9 million to $252,63 million.

“This is attributed to the proliferation of alternative Over the Top communication platforms such as WhatsApp and Viber.

“The decline in traffic also led to the 2,9 percent and 14,6 percent decline in revenues by the mobile operators and the fixed network respectively,” said Potraz.

Revenue generated by the three mobile operators in the second quarter of 2015 was $183,1 million a 2,9 percent decline from $188,5 million recorded in the previous quarter.

Zimbabwe has three MNOs, Econet, NetOne and Telecel Zimbabwe (Telecel).

Revenue from fixed telephone voice service declined by 14,6 percent to record $30,5 million in the second quarter of 2015 from $35,6 million recorded in the previous quarter.

The report also showed that fixed telephone subscriptions increased 1,1 percent to reach 332,866 from 329,252 subscribers recorded in the previous quarter as active mobile subscribers increased by 0,8 percent to reach 11,9 million from 11,8 million subscribers recorded in the previous quarter.

“The total number of Internet subscriptions increased by 0,6 percent to record 5,815,518 subscribers from 5,782,491 subscribers recorded in the previous quarter.

“On the other hand postal and courier services registered a decline in volumes. Whilst fixed and mobile operators experienced an increase in their subscribers, this did not translate to an increase in voice traffic,” Potraz said.

International internet bandwidth capacity has been on an upward trajectory as demand for internet keeps on increasing.

Equipped international internet bandwidth capacity increased to 30710Mbps from 26,950 Mbps recorded in the previous quarter. Revenues by IAPs also increased by 1,1 percent to record $34 million from $33,7 million recorded in the previous quarter.

The value of electronic transactions processed at postal outlets through Zipcash as well as other mobile money platforms was $733,208 a 6,4 percent increase from $689,056 recorded in the previous quarter.

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