- In 2016, Panama was the third-largest telecom services market in Central America, behind Guatemala and Costa Rica, with estimated revenue of US$1.3bn or 2.4% of GDP. This represents a 2.4% increase relative to 2015, mainly driven by the fixed broadband, pay-TV and mobile data segments.
- Pyramid Research expects to see overall telecom service revenue grow at a 1.5% CAGR from 2016 to 2021. The fixed/mobile revenue split will continue to be inclined toward the mobile segment. The fixed services revenue share will increase by 1.1 percentage points, driven by the government’s national Internet network initiative for expanding Internet penetration in the country and attractive double- and triple-play services from operators such as Cable & Wireless Panama (CWP) and Cable Onda. Mobile data will be an important source of revenue and a mechanism to attract subscribers in a highly competitive market.
- The top two operators — CWP, which provides fixed, mobile and pay-TV services, and Digicel Panama, which provides mobile services — accounted for 57.7% of overall service revenue in 2016. CWP will continue to lead the Panamanian telecom market throughout the forecast period, supported by strong investments in 4G network expansion and network modernization of its fixed infrastructure.
- In 2016, adoption of 3G technologies represented 59.1% of the mobile subscription base; we project this will grow to 62.1% by year-end 2021, driven by the migration of connections from 2G to 3G networks. 4G subscriptions will reach 2.3m by year-end 2021, or 32.9% of total mobile subscriptions in Panama. LTE network expansion along with the rising demand for high-speed mobile data and increased availability of LTE-enabled smartphones will boost LTE subscriptions.
- The total number of fixed access lines increased by 3.1% year-over-year to 1.0m in 2016, due to increasing adoption of broadband technologies such as xDSL, cable and FTTx. We expect the number of access lines to increase to 1.1m by year-end 2021. Cable accounted for an estimated share of 48.0% of total broadband access lines followed by xDSL (42.7%). The number of xDSL broadband lines will surpass cable by 2020, representing 43.6% of total broadband access lines at year-end 2021.
The pay-TV market generated an estimated $149.4m in service revenue and had a household penetration rate of 43.0% at year-end 2016. Panama’s relatively high GDP per capita levels in comparison to other Latin American countries indicates there are still growth opportunities for operators to increase their customer base within the pay-TV market.
Price: $990 (Single User License)
Published: Jan 2017
Publisher: Pyramid Research
Report Format: electronic pdf