Venezuela’s telecoms sector earned operating revenues of USD1.86 billion in the first quarter of 2007, an increase of 34% compared to the corresponding period of 2006, reports the country’s regulator Conatel. Total sector investment was USD193 million in the quarter, up 40.5% year-on-year. The country ended March with 19.6 million mobile subscribers, an increase of 43.6% on a year ago, according to the watchdog, giving a penetration rate of 71.6% (50.9%). Fixed telephony subscribers reached 4.28 million at the end of the quarter, up by 15.8% from 1Q2006. According to Conatel, the increase in the fixed segment is mainly due to the installation of new fixed-wireless lines. Internet subscribers at end-March totalled 762,868, up 12.1% year-on-year, with broadband subscribers accounting for 78.9% of the total, an increase of 51.2% in twelve months, according to the report.