The Government of Egypt recognizes that a well-developed information and communications technology platform is the key to achieving high and sustainable economic growth. In October 1999, the Government committed to this ideal by creating the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT), giving a strong boost to a sector that grew at nearly 20% annually in the last three years.
Best prospects include: Switches, base stations, towers, wireless, software/hardware, VoIP, IP Multi Media Systems (IMS), IPTV, GPS, Radio Frequency Identification (RFID), and wireless, triple play convergence, and call centers.
The Egyptian telecommunications market was estimated at $ 3.3 billion in 2007/2008. It is one of the fastest developing sectors of the Egyptian economy, growing at 20% annually and attracting local and foreign investment that exceeded $1.4 billion in the last 4 years.
Major players in the telecommunications sector are:
1- One fixed line operator: Telecom Egypt
2- Three GSM operators: Mobinil, Vodafone Egypt, and Etisalat Misr
3- Four Class A ISPs: Link Egypt, TE Data, EgyNet, and Nile on Line.
Mobile services are the leading market segment that constitutes 80% of the revenue, followed by fixed services, international long distance calls and Internet. Since introduced in the Egyptian market in 1999, the number of mobile users grew exponentially and is now exceeding by far the number of fixed line users. As of January 2009, cellular telephone subscribers reached 43 million; fixed line actual users reached 12 million and a capacity of 14.350 million local exchanges. Over 12.573 million households have an Internet access, of which 720,000 use broadband connection.
Following are some indicators of the telecommunications market as of January 2009:
• Fixed line users reached 12 million, compared to 4.9 million in 2000
• Capacity of local exchanges is 14.350 million
• Fixed line penetration 15.8%
• Number of exchanges in rural areas is 1177 exchange compared to 775 in 2000, meaning there are 32.9 telephone lines for each 100 families.
• Number of public pay phones 58,269
• International telephone circuits 45.183
• Internet users exceeded 10 million users
• Mobile line subscribers reached 43 million compared in 1 million in 2000
• Mobile penetration 56.65%
• Internet users reached 12.573 million
• Internet penetration 17%
• ADSL subscribers 719.663