Sri Lanka's telecoms market is relatively small but mature compared to neighbouring countries of Bangladesh and Pakistan. A good start has been made on expansion and provision of supporting infrastructure for telecommunications services.
The fixed line market in Sri Lanka remains underdeveloped due to the dominance of the mobile segment. Further, the number of fixed telephone lines is slowly declining as the mobile segment continues to expand. Overall penetration dropped from 16.3% in 2012 to 11.3% in 2017. The market is predicted to decline further over the next five years to 2022 as the mobile segment continues to grow for both voice and data/broadband usage.
Sri Lanka's mobile market has experienced strong growth over the last five years.
By offering an effective and efficient alternative to the fixed-line networks, with their chronic problems in meeting the general demand for telephone services, the mobile phone has become an essential service and has grown strongly.
Mobile penetration has risen from 96% in 2012 to 126% in 2017. The last three years in particular have seen very strong growth led by the market leader Dialog Axiata. Slow to moderate growth is predicted over the next five years to 2022. The market will be constrained from higher growth due to very strong local competition and a saturated mobile market.
Sri Lanka has seen a very strong increase in mobile broadband penetration over the past five years with market penetration increasing from 8% in 2012 to 21% in 2017, driven by a rising level of mobile subscribers. However, the mobile broadband market is still at an early stage of development with penetration well below most other developed Asian countries.
The development of the internet remains of particular concern for Sri Lanka. Coverage and accessibility remains limited and the sophistication of the available services generally remained low.
Fixed broadband penetration in Sri Lanka remains very low mainly due to the dominance of the mobile platform. Also, the limited and declining number of fixed lines is restricting more widespread development of fixed broadband. However, the market has grown strongly over the past five years from a very small base with penetration increasing from 1.7% in 2012 to 4.7% in 2017. Over the next five years to 2022 strong growth is expected to continue.
Ongoing growth in the telecoms market is likely to be spearheaded by data services (from both mobile and fixed sources). Demand for broadband data services driven by 4G adoption and increased smartphone penetration should drive reasonably strong growth in the local market over the next few years.
The market is now moving from 4G towards 5G mobile services. Dialog Axiata carried out a 5G' network capability trial with technology partners Ericsson and Huawei in Colombo.
The availability of e-commerce applications including mobile banking, e-bus ticketing, and mobile points of sale (POS) continues to increase.
- Moderate growth is predicted over the next five years for Sri Lanka's internet market.
- The market is now moving from 4G towards 5G mobile services.
- Fixed broadband penetration in Sri Lanka remains very low mainly due to the dominance of the mobile platform.
- Sri Lanka has seen a very strong increase in mobile broadband penetration over the past five years.
- The availability of e-commerce applications continues to increase.
SLT (Sri Lanka Telecom), Mobitel, Dialog Axiata; Etisalat Sri Lanka; Hutchison Lanka; Bharti Airtel Lanka; SLT, Lanka Bell, Suntel.
2. Key statistics
3. Country overview
4. Telecommunications market
4.1 Market Overview and Analysis
5. Regulatory environment
5.1 Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (TRC)
5.2 National Policy on Telecommunications
6. Fixed network operators
6.1 Overview of operators
6.2 SLT (Sri Lanka Telecom)
6.3 Lanka Bell
6.4 Dialog Broadband Networks (DBN)
7. Telecommunications infrastructure
7.2 Fixed-line statistics and Market Forecast
7.3 National Broadband Network
7.4 Other developments
7.4.1 Wireless Local Loop (WLL)
7.4.2 Fibre optic networks
7.4.3 Fibre to the Building (FttB)
7.5 International infrastructure
7.6 Specific IT developments
7.6.1 Cloud Computing
8. Fixed-line broadband market
8.2 Internet Statistics and Market Forecast
8.3 Fixed Broadband Statistics and Market Forecast
8.4 Fixed-line broadband technologies
8.4.1 Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) networks
8.4.2 Wireless broadband/WiMAX
9. Mobile market
9.1 Mobile Statistics and Market Forecast
9.2 Mobile Broadband Statistics and Market Forecast
9.5 Mobile Regulatory issues
10. Mobile infrastructure
10.1 Digital networks
10.1.2 4G LTE
10.1.3 4.5G developments
11. Major mobile operators
11.2 Dialog Axiata
11.4 Etisalat Sri Lanka
11.5 Hutchison Lanka
11.6 Bharti Airtel Lanka
12. Mobile Content and Applications
13. Digital economy
13.4.1 School Net project
13.4.2 Connect To Learn Project in Kandy
14. Digital Media
14.2 Project Loon
14.3 Digital Terrestrial TV (DTT)
14.4 Cable and pay TV
15. Related reports
List of Tables
Table 1 Country statistics Sri Lanka 2017 (e)
Table 2 Telephone network statistics 2017 (e)
Table 3 Internet user statistics 2017 (e)
Table 4 Broadband statistics 2017 (e)
Table 5 Mobile statistics 2017 (e)
Table 6 National telecommunications authorities
Table 7 Sri Lanka's real GDP growth rate 2006 - 2017
Table 8 Percentage of Population Covered by Type of Mobile Network
Table 9 Key Metrics - Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) - 2017 - 2022
Table 10 Historic - Fixed-line operators and subscribers
Table 11 Number of telecom operator licences by category - 2017
Table 12 Historic - SLT fixed-line subscribers
Table 13 Historic - Lanka Bell fixed-line subscribers
Table 14 Historic - DBN fixed-line subscribers
Table 15 Fixed Line Subscriptions and Penetration (with Forecast) 2007 - 2022
Table 16 Historic - Fixed-lines subscribers and penetration - 2006 - 2012
Table 17 Fixed subscribers wireline and wireless (WLL) - 2009 - 2016
Table 18 Historical fixed-line subscribers, annual change and penetration 1995 - 2005
Table 19 Historical - WLL subscribers
Table 20 WLL subscribers 2006 2016
Table 21 Internet Users and Penetration (with Forecast) 2007 - 2022
Table 22 Historic - Internet users, annual change and penetration 1996 - 2012
Table 23 Fixed internet subscribers 1994 - 2016
Table 24 International Internet Bandwidth and Annual Growth 1998 - 2017
Table 25 Fixed Broadband Subscribers (with Forecast) 2007 - 2022
Table 26 Historic - Fixed broadband subscribers and penetration 2002 - 2011
Table 27 Historic - DSL subscribers
Table 28 Mobile Subscribers and Penetration (with Forecast) 2007 - 2022
Table 29 Historic - Mobile subscribers, annual change and penetration 1995 - 2011
Table 30 Mobile Broadband Subscribers and Penetration (with Forecast) 2009 - 2022
Table 31 Mobile operators and systems
Table 32 Mobile operator subscribers and Market Share - 2017
Table 33 Historic - Mobile operator subscribers and Market Share 2016
Table 34 Dialog Axiata subscribers and market share 2004 - 2017
Table 35 Dialog Axiata prepaid subscribers 2004 - 2017
Table 36 Dialog Axiata ARPU 2007 - 2017
Table 37 Mobitel subscribers 2004 - 2017
Table 38 Mobitel annual revenue 2015 - 2016
Table 39 Etisalat Sri Lanka subscribers - 2004 - 2017
Table 40 Hutchison Lanka subscribers 2006 - 2017
Table 41 Bharti Airtel Lanka subscribers 2009 - 2017
Table 42 Key broadcasting statistics
Table 43 DTV's DTH subscribers 2008 - 2016
List of Charts
Chart 1 Fixed Line & Mobile Penetration 2017; 2022
Chart 2 Internet, Fixed Broadband & Mobile Broadband Penetration 2017; 2022
Chart 3 Fixed Line Subscriptions and Penetration (with Forecast) 2007 - 2022
Chart 4 Internet Users and Penetration (with Forecast) - 2007 - 2022
Chart 5 Percentage of Households with Internet Access at Home (with Forecast) - 2007 - 2022
Chart 6 - Percentage of Households with a Computer (with Forecast) - 2007 - 2022
Chart 7 Fixed Broadband Subscribers (with Forecast) - 2007 - 2022
Chart 8 Mobile Subscribers and Penetration (with Forecast) 2007 - 2022
Chart 9 Mobile Broadband Subscribers and Penetration (with Forecast) 2009 - 2022
Chart 10 - Mobile operator subscriber market share 2017