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MAP > the Telecommunications Market in Burkina Faso

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Burkina Faso has been making more efforts to be able to end the high mobile roaming charges. Telecom sector in this country has continued to be stymied by the slow regulatory procedures as well as insufficient mobile spectrum, which is compounded by poor condition of the fixed-line networks that has held back the development of the fixed line internet services and the rendered such services among most expensive globally. Fixed line incumbent Onatel has now been 61% owned by the Maroc Telecom. It does operate the country’s fixed-line network and one of three mobile networks Telmob.

Mobile telephony has been able to experience huge growth since the competition got to be introduced in the year 2000. Well, there has been fluidity in the ownership with the Zain company, having been acquired by the Bharti Airtel before getting sold on to the Orange Group in the year 2016. Despite the market penetration remaining being below African Average, it has continued to grow steadily. Onatel’s FasoNet has become the leading internet service provider, providing high cost of connectivity despite price cuts being introduced since the year 2011 in the wake of the improved international bandwidth via the fiber links through the adjacent countries.

Such links offer access to the region’s international submarine cables. But close to 50 ISPs have received a license, only three can compete with the FASONet and collectively, they have fewer than 1000 subscribers. The poor fixed-line infrastructure has resulted in the mobile operators have become very key players in the internet sector, accounting for the majority of the connections.

Some of the key developments include:

- Burkina Faso going ahead and joining G5 Sahel countries to be able to eliminate or even get rid of the roaming fees. This was set to be achieved by the year 2019.
- The report update includes the regulator’s annual report and the market statistical data to the year 2017, the telco’s financial as well as the operating data to Q3 by the year 2018, according to recent market developments.
- Government goes ahead and progresses with the XOF23.6 Billion project to offer the metropolitan fiber optic infrastructure.
- Vodafone Wholesale and the Huawei finishes cable to the Ghanaian border.
- The international internet bandwidth increases to close to 17.7 Gb/S.
- Huawei begins the first phase of the new national fiber backbone project.
- Government goes ahead and prepares to be able to amend the legislation to enhance the regulations as well as a legal framework that governs the telecom sector.

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