Growing Internet usage in Bahrain to impact market rates

Increased Internet usage in Bahrain is set to have a positive effect on the prevailing rates in the market, according to a report released by the Arab Advisors Group.

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By  Vijaya George Published  November 4, 2002

Bahrain’s Internet market is all set for liberalisation as of 2003, according to a report released by the Arab Advisors Group. This is, in turn, projected to have a positive effect on the prevailing rates in the market.

"The growth in the Internet market in Bahrain will continue. Even with Batelco’s monopoly, the Internet usage in the country is currently high, with a subscribers’ penetration rate of 6.44% as of yearend 2001," stated Hala Baqain, AAG analyst.

According to the report, the market is capable of sustaining more growth especially with the effect of anticipated competition in 2003. "We expect it to have extensive competition-induced rate reductions that will further enhance the uptake of the Internet services. The ADSL service will have a whopping share of the Internet subscriber base as we expect it to reach 14% of the Internet total number of subscribers in 2006, one of the highest in the region," explained Baqain.

The report also shows how Batelco’s relationship with Cable & Wireless has allowed the former to become a popular datacomm provider in the region. The operator is spearheading the global datacomm provider’s network in the region. The datacomm services (including the leased circuits) are Batelco’s third major revenue stream following the fixed and mobile services. The PDN market contributes a big share of the operator’s total revenues; in 2001 it generated more than US$ 34 million (not including leased circuits), 8% of Batelco’s total revenues.

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