Kyrgyzstan had implemented full competition across all segments of its telecoms sector over a decade ago, reports Research & Markets.
The telecommunications sector in Kyrgyzstan has been generally characterised by an open market that welcomes both foreign and domestic investors. However there remains more to be done on the regulatory front to take full advantage of the reforms already in place. Compared to other Asian nations, Kyrgyzstan has very low fixed line and fixed-broadband penetration and low to moderate mobile broadband penetration.
Fixed broadband penetration continues to grow strongly but from a very small base. Penetration in Kyrgyzstan remains very low mainly due to the dominance of the mobile platform. In addition, the limited and declining number of fixed telephone lines is restricting more widespread development. Over the next five years to 2023 low to moderate growth is expected from this small base.
International connectivity continues to grow. Kyrgyztelecom began construction of its second cross-border network link with Tajikistan. The international terrestrial link was required due to increased internet demand chiefly from users in Tajikistan.
The mobile subscriber growth rate in Kyrgyzstan has slowed considerably over the past four years due to a saturated mobile subscriber market. Further slow growth is also predicted over the next five years to 2023. Although there are four mobile networks in operation, the market is dominated by the two operators; Sky Mobile (Beeline) and MegaCom.
Mobile broadband continues to grow strongly in Kyrgyzstan. The mobile broadband subscriber penetration has grown strongly over the past six years driven by a mature mobile subscriber base and rollout of faster 4G mobile networks. 4G networks now cover over 50% of the nation as the major mobile operators gain momentum in their rollouts.
Strong growth is predicted over the next five years to 2023. The mobile broadband market will be driven by increasingly faster speeds offered by the mobile operators as they roll out 4G and eventually 5G networks and improving tariffs due to strong competition.