The telecom operators have invested BDT480 billion in the country from 2009 to 2016, thanks to the 3G spectrum allocation, renewal of licenses and procurement of biometric devices, according to the Association of Mobile Telecom Operators of Bangladesh (AMTOB). “We invested over BDT480 billion in last seven years out of the BDT788.46 billion investments so far in the telecom sector,” AMTOM secretary general TM Nurul Kabir told.
He said the telecom operators have already shared the accumulated investment figure with State Minister for Post and Telecommunications Tarana Halim at a review meeting recently. “Procurement of biometric devices in 2016, 3G spectrum auctions in 2013 and renewal of licenses in 2011 made up the majority of the investments,” he informed. “We invested BDT5 billion for procurement of two lakh devices for biometric registration of mobile phone users,” Nurul Kabir said. 125.4 megahertz of spectrum had cost the mobile operators BDT150 billion. Rest of the investment came from the installation of over 44,000 base transceiver stations and over 26,000 Node-B network units to ensure smooth services, market insiders said. The number of mobile phone subscribers in the country currently stands at 117.80 million after the biometric registration. A total of 66.90 million subscribers using mobile internet. Mobile phone users made voice calls of 700 inutes per day on an average in 2016, according to telecom operators’ data.
The data also suggests that the usages of Internet and data services have increased by 2,400 times between 2009 and 2016. The current data consumption is 1000 terabyte (TB) a day. Of the total internet data, 43 percent is used for Facebook, 21 percent for Youtube and the rest of Whatsapp, Viber, Emo and internet services. According to available data till August 2016, Grameenphone holds 46 percent market share with Robi and Airtel together holding 27 percent, Banglalink 25 percent and the rest by Teletalk and Citycell.