Ministry predicts strong growth for 2005

10 Jan 2005

Vietnam’s National Institute for Post and Telecommunication Strategy unit predicts that teledensity in the country could top 16% by the end of 2005, with cellular penetration reaching 8% at the same date. Broadband internet subscriptions are tipped to break the 100,000 barrier, and 12% of the population will regularly access the internet. Official figures from the Ministry of Post and Telematics reported that eleven out of every 100 people had a phone connection at the end of November 2004.

Much of the growth will be driven by recently licensed mobile phone operators Viettel and S-Fone, which are gearing up to assault the market in the coming year. State-run Viettel plans to launch its Flex package with pre-paid cards priced from VND50,000 to VND500,000, while S-Fone, operated by a South Korean-Vietnamese business co-operation contract, plans to offer video on demand (VoD) by the first quarter of 2005. However, the operator will face stiff competition from the state-backed venture. After just two months of official operations, Viettel has signed up 150,000 subscribers, a figure S-Fone took nearly 18 months to achieve.