Teledensity declines as Nigeria’s active calls, internet subscriptions grow – NCC

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The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) reports a consistent rise in active voice and internet subscriptions in the country.

The NCC further noted a decline in teledensity as outlined in the latest telecommunications statistical indicators. These figures have been revised to accommodate the latest population growth data and adhere to international best practices.

Dr. Reuben Muoka, NCC’s Director of Public Affairs, revealed this information in a statement issued on Tuesday in Abuja.

Muoka explained that the adjustment was based on the Nigerian Population Commission’s (NPC) updated projection of Nigeria’s population, now estimated at 216,783,381 as of 2022, replacing the previously utilized 2017 projection of 190 million people.

He said, “With the consequential adjustment, which is in line with the International Telecommunication Union’s (ITU) calculation of teledensity, the nation’s teledensity dropped from 115.63 per cent to 102.30 per cent in September.

“While broadband penetration witnessed a similar drop from 45.47 per cent to 40.85 per cent in the same month.

“The active voice subscription statistics witnessed marginal growth from 220,361,186 to 221,769,883 as of September 2023.

“In addition, Internet subscriptions also enjoyed marginal growth, from 159,034,717 in August 2023 to 160,171,757 in September 2023.”

Mouka reported that in October 2023, the sector saw a 0.19 percent uptick in active voice subscriptions, maintaining a teledensity of 102.49 percent.

Additionally, internet subscriptions registered a 0.60 percent growth compared to September 2023.

In November of the same year, the industry observed a 0.46 percent expansion in active voice subscriptions.

Teledensity reached 102.97 percent, accompanied by a 0.57 percent rise in internet subscriptions compared to October 2023.

Mouka said, “Teledensity is an index prescribed by the International Telecommunications Union, ITU, for the measurement of telephone penetration in a population by a factor of one line per 100 individuals in the population.

“The adjustment by the Commission is consistent with Section 89 Subsection 3(d) of the Nigerian Communications Act 2003 (NCA 2003).

“The Commission is mandated to monitor and report on the state of the Nigerian telecommunications industry, provide statistical analysis, and identify industry trends concerning services, tariffs, operators, technology, subscribers, and issues of competition.

”The Executive Vice-Chairman of NCC, Dr Aminu Maida, affirmed the nation’s telecom statistical adjustment process as an appropriate step to maintain the integrity of data about the Nigerian telecom industry as collected, collated, and published by the Commission.”

Maida emphasized that this approach would guarantee precise assessment of the Commission’s advancements in achieving higher broadband penetration rates, enhanced service quality, and expanded population coverage.

He further highlighted that such data serves as valuable information for the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), of which Nigeria is a member, as well as other development agencies, operators, investors, multilateral agencies, and the general public.