7 million new lines29 starting 2010 we see a rise in

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Unformatted text preview: ntially higher at 27% against India’s tele-density of 3.4%. In the first nine months of 2008, the fixed line base declined by 0.9 million in India. While state-owned Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) and Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Limited (MTNL) together lost 1.61 million fixed line subscribers, private operators managed to add 0.7 million new lines.29 Starting 2010, we see a rise in fixed lines due to a rise in demand for fixed broadband services among small and medium enterprises and home users. We estimate the fixed line base to be approximately 45 million to 50 million in 2012.30 The Government has waived the license fee on rural fixed lines.31 The immediate gainer will be BSNL, which has 36.6% of its fixed line subscribers in rural areas.32 While this is a good beginning, it is not enough. To realize the fixed line growth, this waiver needs to be extended throughout the country. Broadband subscribers are expected to grow from approximately 3 million subscribers in 2007 to 25 million to 30 million subscribers in 2012 whereas internet subscribers are expected to grow from 10 million subscribers in 2007 to 45 million subscribers in 2012. However broadband could see a 30% to 40% increase from the said projections if WiMax services gain traction. Though WiMax is unlikely to replace existing wireline broadband, it is going to drive broadband subscriber additions especially in areas where quality last mile infrastructure is not available. 23 TRAI press release No. 74/2004, 8 November 2004 24 TRAI press release No. 79/2008, 24 September 2008 25 Ibid. 26 TRAI press release No. 89/2006, 12 September 2006 27 International Telecommunication Union; World Telecommunications Indicators/ ICT Indicators Database 28 Ibid. 29 TRAI press releases No. 86/2008; TRAI press release No. 11/2008 30 CII-Ernst & Young analysis 31 “Amendment in license Agreement for Basic Telephone Services/UAS license agreements with respect to license fees”, Department of Telecommunication, Government of India, 29 August 2008 32 Telecom Services Performance Indicators April to June 2008, TRAI, 7 October 2008, Page 60 India 2012: Telecom growth continues 23 Wireless Internet use on the rise Wireless Internet Subs...
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