The Ugandan ICT market is growing at a cumulative annual growth rate (CAGR) of above 25%. This double digit growth has been registered over the last 5 years. The sector is mainly comprised of; provision of voice and data communication services, ICT training, website development and maintenance, custom software development. This upward trend is expected to continue as long as new players join the market.
The bulk of investment expenditure has been in the roll out of mobile broadband solutions and other Internet related infrastructure. Investment in the sector is expected to grow in the near future as the new service providers expand their networks coupled with the expenditure for the 3rd phase of the national backbone infrastructure network.
Because of it cross-cutting nature, the ICT sector plays a very big role in employment, job creation and quality/efficiency in other services delivery. For decades, the ICT sector in Uganda has been revolving around the Telecommunications, Postal and Broadcasting services. The sector has now grown at a phenomenal rate especially in the areas of mobile devices, computer applications, information processing, storage and dissemination (Broadcasting and Internet Points of Presence at district levels) as well as m-finance, e-finance, global connectivity and online trade. The posts and telecommunications services activities accounts for more than 3.3 per cent of GDP.
Key Features of the Sector and Trends
Sector dynamism is a result of Uganda’s good ICT legal and regulatory framework, a stable macroeconomic environment and economic reforms pursued since the early 1990s. The telecommunications sub-sector, formerly dominated by a single national operator, has been progressively liberalised over the last 10 years.
Fixed-line and DSL penetration is low but has seen a renaissance recently on the back of wireless local loop (WLL) rollouts, prepaid services and an increasing demand for broadband access. Table 19 below shows the estimated market services penetration rates in Uganda’s telecommunications sector as of end of 2011.
Telecommunications statistics 2007- 2011
|Telephone traffic (‘000 minutes)||3,004,738||4,268,705||7,146,567||10,037,722||13,028,046|
|Mobile cellular operators||3||4||6||6||6|
|Private FM Radio stations||195||220||228||238||263|
|Private Analogue TV stations||41||50||55||55||64|
|Major postal operator||1||1||1||1||1|
|Courier services operators||20||21||29||30||35|
Source: UBOS Statistical Abstract 2012
The cost of international bandwidth has been reduced dramatically following the landing of the first international submarine cables on the East African coast in 2009/10. Uganda is now connected. This has caused a spur in growth of capacity with the international bandwidth by 5-fold.
Economic Activities in the Sector
The mobile market accounts for 63% of the telecom revenue followed by the fixed line segment. On the rise are headsets
Telecom Revenue Distribution
Revenues as well as Value Added Services: The entry of new operators has resulted in the emergence of a whole sale infrastructure market as new entrants adopt the infrastructure leasing approach to the market entry.
Market penetration for voice is currently at 33.5% with population coverage of close to 100%. Mobile subscriptions account for more than 90% of new connections (figure 8) whereas fixed wireless terminals account for more than 60% of the total fixed lines.
Ugandan regulation policy advocates for technology neutral approach and currently, there are many networking elements in play in Uganda.
Technology Platforms of Service Providers
|Technology Platform||Service Providers|
|1||3G, GPRS and CDMA||UTL, MTN, Airtel, Warid, Orange Uganda Limited|
|2||Fibre and DSL||UTL, MTN, Kampala Siti Cable, Infocom, Roke Telecom|
|3||ISDN and Leased Lines||UTL, MTN|
|4||VSAT||Afsat Communications (U) Ltd, UTL, MTN, Africa Online Ltd, Maisha Networks Uganda|
|5||Other Wireless (Including Wimax)||Foris Telecom (in), Datanet, Infocom, Nomad Communications (Tangerine), TMP (Broadband Company), All Telecos|
Source: Uganda Communication Commission
1. Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) andKnowledge Process Outsourcing (KPO)
2. ICT Technology Parks: these will boost the development of BPO Incubation and Innovation systems.
3. E-Commerce & M-Commerce Solutions and B2B solutions
4. Software Development
5. Software Testing & Assurance.
6. Data Integration.
7. Data Warehousing and Data Management.
8. Integrated Solutions Planning
9. Hardware Equipment Assemble.
10. Multimedia Development and Music.
11. Internet Applications.
12. E-Translation Services..
13. Rural Communications.
14. Broadband Service Provision.
15. Software Solutions for Financial Sector.
16. Network Computing /Management software.
17. Intranet Internet &Extranet Applications.
18. Professional Solutions for Manufacturing Industry.
19. IT Education and Specialized Training and
20. Information Security and Management.
21. Setting up IT virtual zones
22. Website support and maintenance
23. Search Engine Optimisation
24. Uganda government through NITA is inviting Ugandans in Diaspora to participate in ICT projects listed under:
Specific Sector Related Incentives
Reduced taxes and tax waivers on computer and their accessories.
Free land in UIA industrial parks.
|Ministry of Information and Communications Technology
4th Floor Social Security House
PO Box 7817
|Uganda Communications Commission.
Tel: +256 414 339000, +256 312 339000
Fax: +256 414 348832
| National Information and Communications Authority Uganda (NITA-U).
Tel: +256 414 705720, +256 414 705710
Fax: +256 414 251 775