BMI View: We retai n a generally positive outlook f or the UAE telecommunications marketin g our Q2 2016 report update. The UAE benefits from having strong GDP per capita, high disposable incomes and a strong influx of migrant population. Despite market maturity and a very high penetration rate, we retain our positive outlook over the course of our forecast period out to 2020. Furthermore, Etisalat and du, the tw o operat o rs in the country are aggressively competing against each other whilst investing heavy sums into technological innovation, capital investments and launching new products and services. We believe that the high degree of competition has le d to significant advancement in technologi c al uptake in the country. We anticipate that continued 4G and 4.5G/LTE-Advanced growth in the latter years of our forecast will drive the market forward, further propelled by price cuts and advances in VAS and contents offered.
Latest Updates & Industry Developments
In 2015 the UAE mobile market saw a net increase of 737,000 subscribers. This is based on data reported by Etisalat and du, as well as the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA). We estimate that the total number of mobile subscriptions reached 17.12mn by the end of 2015, equivalent to a penetration rate of 187%. We expect the UAE mobile market to maintain positive growth throughout our forecast period, through to 2020, due to strong competition between Etisalat and du, as well as the continued influx of migrant workers and temporary visitors on the back of an improving economy, a stable political environment and major events in the country, such as the Dubai 2020 World Trade Expo. Nevertheless, we caution that the market contains a significant number of inactive subscriptions and SIM cards that have not yet been discounted. As such, they may be artificially inflating the penetration rate.
Etisalat and du are both aggressively investing into advanced capabilities, cloud computing services and inking industry contracts to develop existing infrastructure and to make their services future-proof as they look to support the national Vision2021 agenda by offering increased mobile services and fixed capabilities across the Gulf nation.
In October 2015, it was announced that Etisalat and du would allow increased competition among fixed line services to clients by allowing them to choose their services provider within nine to 12 months.
By the end of 2020 we expect the number of mobile subscriptions to rise to 18.18mn. Growth across the market as a whole will be driven by migration to 3G/4G services and by a trend towards the use of multiple SIM-connected devices. Although mobile average revenues per user (ARPU s ) will continue to decline, we expect the pace of decline to become much more gradual as ARPU contraction becomes offset by growing consumer appetite for mobile data services.
We maintain a positive growth outlook for the broadband sector, based on the continued investment in next generation networks by Etisalat and du. Although new investments in fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) will drive up in fixed broadband services, we expect mobile broadband to be the main form of internet access. By 2020 there will be 3.64mn broadband accesses, up from 3.033mn at the end of 2015.
|Strong Innovation to Drive Advanced Services Growth|
The United Arab Emirates Telecommunications Report features BMI Research's independent industry forecasts on the future strength of United Arab Emirates's ICT market, covering the fixed-line, mobile and internet segments and analyses latest regulatory developments and corporate news, including investment activity, mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures and partnerships. Leading operators and manufacturers are fully profiled, highlighting their quarterly financial performance, capital expenditure plans and latest contracts.
BMI's United Arab Emirates Telecommunications Report provides industry professionals and researchers, operators, equipment suppliers and vendors, corporate and financial services analysts and regulatory bodies with independent forecasts and competitive intelligence on the telecoms industry in United Arab Emirates.
- Benchmark BMI's independent telecoms industry forecasts for United Arab Emirates to test other views - a key input for successful budgeting and strategic business planning in the Emirati telecoms market.
- Target business opportunities and risks in United Arab Emirates's telecoms sector through our reviews of latest industry trends, regulatory changes and major deals, projects and investments in United Arab Emirates.
- Assess the activities, strategy and market position of your competitors, partners and clients via our Company Profiles (inc. SWOTs, KPIs and latest activity).
BMI Industry View
Summary of BMI’s key industry forecasts and views, covering the ARPU, fixed-line, mobile (including 3G & 4G), internet and broadband markets.
Industry SWOT Analysis
Analysis of the major Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats within the wireline and wireless sectors and within the broader political, economic and business environment.
BMI Industry Forecast Scenario
Historic data series (2010-2013) and forecasts to end-2019 for all key industry indicators, supported by explicit assumptions, plus analysis of key downside risks to the main forecast.
- Fixed-line Telephony – Telephone lines (‘000); telephone lines/100 inhabitants.
- Cellular Telephony – Mobile phone subscribers (‘000); mobile phone subscribers/100 inhabitants; and where available, 3G & 4G subscribers (‘000); 3G & 4G subscribers/100 inhabitants; 3G & 4G subscribers as a percentage of overall mobile market.
- Internet Markets – Internet users (‘000); internet users/100 inhabitants; broadband internet subscribers (‘000); broadband internet subscribers/100 inhabitants.
BMI’s Telecommunications Risk Reward Index
BMI’s Risk Reward Indices provide investors (vendors, operators and suppliers) looking for opportunities in the region with a clear country comparative assessment of a market’s risks and potential rewards. Each of the country markets are scored using a sophisticated model that includes more than 40 industry, economic and demographic data points to provide an Indices of highest to lowest appeal to investors, with each position explained.
Market Data Analysis
Detailed market analysis of the mobile, mobile content, fixed-line and internet segments, broken down into:
- Market Data – Analysis of market size, operator shares, dominant trends, competitive landscape and key quarterly data.
- Technology/Service Rollout – Analysis of rollout/adoption of new technology, such as 3G & 4G, WiMAX, IPTV, pay-TV, LTE and valueadded handset services (gaming, music, video, apps etc.).
- Mobile Content – The latest trends in content and services available and being introduced by mobile operators, including a timeline of all the latest major mobile content developments.
Company Database – A comprehensive breakdown of KPIs of the leading mobile operators, including subscriber figures by type (pre-paid and post-paid); 3G & 4G subscriber figures; net additions; market share; ARPU; churn rates; minutes of use; voice and non-voice revenue; financial figures (including operating revenues, net profits and EBITDA).
Details of the regulatory bodies and their responsibilities, as well as a special focus on the rules surrounding competition and interconnection. Also covers the latest updates in the market’s development and regulatory rulings.
Examines the competitive positioning and short- to medium-term business strategies of key industry players. Strategy is examined within the context of BMI’s industry forecasts, our macroeconomic views and our understanding of the wider competitive landscape to generate Company SWOT analyses. The latest financial and operating statistics and key company developments are also incorporated within the company profiles, enabling a full evaluation of recent company performance and future growth prospects.
The Telecommunications Reports draw on an extensive network of primary sources, such as multilateral organisations, government departments, industry associations, chambers and company reports.
*Company profiles are not available for every country. Those reports instead contain information on the current activities of prominent companies operating in the market.