In its latest report, the NBS noted that the total number of subscribers continued to increase rapidly growing from 19,519,154 subscribers as at the end of 2005 to a total of 154,529,780
subscribers by December 2016.
According to the report titled “Nigeria Telecommunications Sector Summary Report”, the total number of subscribers in 2015 was 151,017,244.
The telecommunication sector’s contribution to GDP, the report said, decreased by 1.8 per cent from the N1.58 billion in the previous quarter to about N1.4 billion.
It stated that as at the end of the fourth quarter of 2016, there were 154,529,780 subscribers, compared with 153,299,535 in September 2015, which represents a quarterly increase of 0.80 per cent.
According to the report, due to differing seasonal patterns, telecommunications tends to account for the lowest share of GDP in the third quarter, stressing that the share of telecommunications in total
real GDP had declined throughout 2010 to 2014.
“Growth in the telecommunications sector has been declining recently, possibly resulting from high market penetration leaving less room for large expansion… growth in the sector remained positive, in contrast with the economy as a whole, year on year growth nevertheless dropped in real terms from 1.5 per cent in the previous quarter to 0.9 per cent, the lowest rate since 2011 Q3” it stated.
The NBS also noted that the yearly increase in total subscriber numbers was 2.33 per cent, which is slightly higher than the yearly increase of 1.75 per cent recorded in the previous quarter.
The report however stated that mobile subscribers using the Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) dominate the total subscription, accounting for 99.74 per cent of the total subscription in December 2016, followed by Core Division Multiple Access (CDMA) with 0.14% of the total.
It stated further that fixed wired had 0.08 percent while wireless accounted for 0.02 percent.
At the end of the last quarter of 2016, Etisalat had 20,809,889 subscribers; Airtel had 22,534,800 while Globacom and MTN had 37,357,843 and 61,840,461 subscribers, respectively.
“The dominance of GSM users has increased since December 2015 when 96.22% of subscribers used this technology type; largely as a result of the continuing decline of CDMA users”, the report stated.