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Timorese government approves submarine cable link to Australia

Christian Fernsby |
Timor-Leste has been moving forward with the regeneration of its economy and rebuilding key infrastructure, including telecommunications networks, that were destroyed during the years of civil unrest.

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Fixed-line and fixed broadband penetration in Timor-Leste remains extremely low, mainly due to the limited fixed-line infrastructure and the proliferation of mobile connectivity. However, in an effort to boost e-government services, in 2018 the government contracted Timor Telecom to build a national terrestrial fibre network.

The project, completed in 2019, has helped boost fixed broadband subscriber growth and will continue to do so over the next few years. The number of subscribers through to 2026 is expected to develop steadily, though from a low base. However, market penetration will remain very low compared to other nations.

By August 2020, Timor-Leste had three telecom service providers who jointly achieved a 98% network coverage nationally. All three major mobile operators - Timor Telecom, Telkomcel and Telemor - launched LTE services during 2019.

Timor-Leste has seen a rapid increase in mobile broadband penetration over the last few years, driven by a rising proportion of mobile subscribers having smartphones. While the mobile broadband market is still at an early stage of development, strong growth is predicted over the next five years.

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