The mobile ecosystem across Sub-Saharan Africa generated almost $150 billion in economic value last year, equivalent to 8.6 percent of the region’s GDP, a new study by the GSMA, published at the ‘Mobile 360 – Africa’ event being held this week in Kigali, Rwanda has revealed.
The report also forecast that the region will generate almost $185 billion (9.1 per cent of GDP) by 2023.
Highlights of the report:
• Around 239 million people, equivalent to 23 per cent of the region’s population, use the mobile internet on a regular basis.
• Smartphones accounted for 39 per cent of mobile connections2 in Sub-Saharan Africa in 2018, forecast to increase to two thirds of connections by 2025.
• 3G will overtake 2G to become the leading mobile technology in Sub-Saharan Africa this year.
• 4G will account for almost one in four connections by 2025. However, 4G uptake is being dampened in some markets by the high cost of 4G devices and delays in assigning 4G spectrum.
• The region’s mobile operators are increasing investment in their networks and are expected to spend $60 billion (capex) on network infrastructure and services between 2018 and 2025 – almost a fifth of this total being invested in new 5G networks.
• Sub-Saharan Africa’s mobile ecosystem supports around 3.5 million jobs, directly and indirectly, and last year contributed almost $15.6 billion to the funding of the public sector through consumer and operator taxes.