With the Iraqi government moving ahead in activating the fourth mobile operator project, Iraq is leading the list of the most competitive Arab cellular markets according to a report published by the Arab Advisors Group on the Cellular Competition Intensity Index for this year. The Arab Advisors Group Cellular Competition Intensity Index measured the level of competition in the Arab world's cellular markets for 2009, indicating that Iraq got 91.0%, ranking first and replacing Jordan which was the most competitive market in the 2007 and 2008 indexes. Commenting on the report, Dr. Diar Ahmed, CEO of Asiacell, said: "We are proud of the level of competitiveness that the sector has reached in Iraq, which is a prerequisite for the advancement of the sector and first and foremost for servicing the Iraqi citizens and providing them with the best services at the best prices. The question I would like to raise here is regarding the government's stance on these indicators and the numbers that show that the cellular market in Iraq has all the necessary elements to elevate and follow the developments that are happening within the sector at the international level. The report underscores the fact that the problems the sector is facing will not be solved by licensing a new operator but by increasing government's cooperation to ensure fair competition and the opportunity for existing operators to put forward solutions and implement them." Dr. Ahmed referred to the example of the government preventing companies to invest in the infrastructure of the sector by installing fibre optic networks, which prevents citizens from their right to clear and uninterrupted calls.
The report indicates that the increased competitiveness of the Iraqi market in comparison to other markets can be attributed to a number of factors, the most important of which is the existence of four operators in Iraq in addition to the existing corporate offers that are available, 3G services and competitive international services. It is worth mentioning that the Arab Advisors Group devised the Cellular Competition Intensity Index in order to rate and properly assess the intensity level of competition in the mobile market as part of a comparison that involved 19 countries in the Arab World. The Index takes into account a number of factors that include the number of licensed and expected mobile operators; the number of working operators; the market share of different operators; number of current prepaid plans; number of current postpaid plans; the availability of corporate offers; the availability of 3G services; and the availability of operational International Long Distance (ILD) competition.
Tuesday / August 25 / 2009