TECH SUPPLIER Aug 2022 - Market Forecast - Doc # META49520622

UAE Telecom Services Market Forecast, 2021—2026


Krishna Chinta

This IDC Market Forecast examines the outlook for the United Arab Emirates' (UAE) telecommunications market for 2021–2026. The study analyzes the provision of consumer and business connectivity (voice and data) and Internet Protocol television (IPTV) services, and discusses the key trends, challenges, and competitive dynamics shaping the market.

The UAE is a duopolistic market, with government entities holding substantial stakes in both licensed operators, du and Etisalat (recently rebranded as "etisalat by e&"). After a year of declining revenues, the sector began to recover in 2021, benefiting from improved economic activity, renewed tourism, ongoing economic diversification, and enterprise digital investments. The Expo 2020 international fair, held in Q4 2021 and Q1 2022, contributed to a brief surge in the mobile segment. Operators, however, face the challenge of leveraging next-generation connectivity services (fiber and 5G) to maintain growth momentum and incrementally increase revenues via digital and ICT services.

"The performance of the UAE telecom sector improved over the last year, driven by rising economic activity and Expo 2020. With 5G network coverage extending across more than 90% of the country and a broad range of 5G handsets available, the uptake of 5G services is likely to grow significantly in the next five years. However, the sector must remain watchful of global economic and geopolitical developments to assess their possible impacts on the UAE economy." — Program Manager Krishna Chinta, Telecom and IoT, IDC MEA



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