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Telecommunications sector reforms in Senegal, Volume 1
Author:Azam, Jean-Paul; Dia, Magueye; N'Guessan, Tchetche; Country:Senegal;
Date Stored:2002/10/25Document Date:2002/09/30
Document Type:Policy Research Working PaperSubTopics:Environmental Economics & Policies; Payment Systems & Infrastructure; Economic Theory & Research; National Governance; Rural Communications; ICT Policy and Strategies; Public Sector Economics
Report Number:WPS2894Sub Sectors:Telecommunications
Collection Title:Policy, Research working paper series ; no. WPS 2894Volume No:1

Summary: This paper analyzes Senegal's experience with telecommunications liberalization and privatization. Senegal privatized its incumbent operator in 1997, and granted the newly privatized firm seven years of fixed-line exclusivity while introducing "managed competition" in the cellular market and free competition in value-added services (VAS). By May 2001, two cellular operators, a number of VAS providers, and thousands of retailers operating telecenters had entered the market. Reform has thus significantly changed the landscape of Senegal's telecommunications sector and has brought with it tremendous improvement in sector performance. Between 1997 and 2001, fixed-line telephone penetration grew from 1.32 to 2.45 per hundred people, while mobile penetration skyrocketed from 0.08 to 4.04. But it is still too early to assess the validity of granting fixed-line exclusivity to the incumbent operator. While penetration increased, the operator did not meet objectives regarding rural telephony. Moreover, fixed-line penetration increased in areas where the operator faced competition from a mobile provider.

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