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100% mobile penetration rate expected by 2021

Myanmar will have achieved the 100 per cent mobile phone penetration rate in six years, according to a survey by the New Crossroads Asia (NCRA), the research branch of the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce.

NCRA believed that the mobile penetration rate in Myanmar would exceed 40 per cent this year.
At the current rate of increase, penetration would reach over 80 per cent by 2019 and 100 per cent in 2021, it said.
Before 2014, Myanmar had one of the lowest mobile penetration rates in the world with less than 20 per cent. The situation has improved significantly after telecom liberalisation.
Two foreign companies, Qatar’s Ooredoo and Norway-based Telenor, were awarded the licenses in 2014. As they started the operations later in the years, Myanmar is flooded with cheap SIM cards.
As of May 2015, Telenor Myanmar said it had 6.4 million mobile phone users and Ooredoo Myanmar claimed 3.3 million subscribers.
Having monopolising the industry for decades, Myanma Posts and Telecommunications said that it had about 9.3 million SIM card users. It plans to spend US$2 billion to expand the mobile network after signing a joint-venture agreement with Japan’s KDDI and Sumitomo Corp.
Mobile SIM cards have also boosted access to the Internet as broadband internet infrastructure remains poor.
The number of websites and domains created by domestic companies rose from 300 in 2013 to about 900 in September 2014. As of November 2014, the number has exceeded 1,000.
Despite the recent improvement, Myanmar still has the lowest mobile penetration rate in Asean. In second place is Laos with about 50 per cent.

Published : June 05, 2015

By : Nwe Yin Aye Myanmar Eleven