Zimbabwe becomes one of the few African countries with 5G

Zimbabwe becomes one of the few African countries with 5G

Zimbabwe’s telcos continue to be affected by the country’s poor economy. This has been exacerbated by the significant economic difficulties related to the pandemic.

Revenue has also been under pressure from a number of recent regulatory measures and additional taxes imposed by the cash-strapped government. Inflation has become so high that year-on-year revenue comparisons since 2019 have been difficult to assess meaningfully.

The three MNOs Econet Wireless, NetOne and Telecel Zimbabwe continue to invest in network upgrades, partly supported by government efforts and cash released from the Universal Service Fund. As a result of these investments, LTE networks have expanded steadily, though services remain concentrated in urban areas.

International bandwidth has improved since fibre links to several submarine cables were established via neighbouring countries. The expansion of 3G and LTE-based mobile broadband services has meant that most of the population has access to the internet. The government has started a national broadband scheme aimed at delivering a 1Mb/s service nationally by 2030. Investment in fixed broadband infrastructure has also resulted in a slow but steady growth in the number of DSL connections, and also fibre subscriptions. During 2021, most growth in the fixed broadband segment has been with fibre connections.

Key developments:

  • Econet launches 5G services, though the country’s liquidity difficulties hamper the purchase of equipment in foreign currency;
  • MNOs increase tariffs for voice and data services to address pressure on revenue;
  • TelOne adds capacity to its Harare data centre;
  • Telcos agree to the government's infrastructure sharing policy;
  • Regulator revokes a number of ISP licenses;
  • TelOne providing satellite broadband with Eutelsat;
  • Government enforces m-money interoperability on MNOs, changes m-money tax rate;
  • Report update includes the regulator's market data to Q3 2021, annual report for 2020, telcos' operating and financial data to Q4 2021, updated Telecom Maturity Index charts and analyses, assessment of the global impact of the pandemic on the telecoms sector, recent market developments.

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Developing Telecoms market report summaries are produced in partnership with BuddeCom, the world’s largest continually updated online telecommunications research service.

The above article is a summary of the following BuddeCom report:

Report title: Zimbabwe - Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband - Statistics and Analyses

Edition: March 2022

Analyst: Henry Lancaster

Number of pages: 181

Single User PDF Licence Price: US$1390

Companies mentioned in this report: TelOne, Econet, TeleAccess, Afritell, DataOne, Powertel Communications, Telco Internet, Broadlands Networks, Aquiva, Africa Online, ComOne, Ecoweb, iWay Africa (MWEB), TelOne, NetOne, Econet Wireless, Telecel, Telecontract, Dandemutande (uMax), Afritell, Liquid Telecom, DataOne, Powertel Communications, Telco Internet, Broadlands Networks, Aquiva, Zimbabwe Online (ZOL, Liquid Home), Aptics

For more information or to purchase a copy of the full report please use the following link: https://www.budde.com.au/Research/Zimbabwe-Telecoms-Mobile-and-Broadband-Statistics-and-Analyses/?r=83