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China leads in fibre broadband, but COVID-19 outbreak could slow down its growth momentum

Strategic Highlights
Published: 2020-02-13

The fixed broadband market in the monitored North-East Asian markets (China, Japan, South Korea) continued to grow significantly, exceeding 492m as of end-3Q19. This growth is still driven by the popularity of high-speed broadband services, with FTTP connections constituting 95% of the total group subscriptions. However, InfoCom expects a gradual slowdown in the segment’s development due mainly to saturation, particularly in China – the top contributor for the group total - as well as the negative impact of COVID-19 (2019-nCov) outbreak which could delay fibre network deployments in some parts of the country.

China leads the region in terms of FTTP subscriptions mainly due to a series of government-led fibre network rollouts. Indeed, the Chinese government is targeting to cover all urban and rural areas with broadband infrastructure, with hefty investments such as the CNY 40bn-worth of network expansion to bring fibre broadband to 130 000 administrative villages by end-2020 (equivalent to more than 95% of total rural villages). As of August 2019, the country claimed that it already covered 98% of the country’s rural villages with broadband networks, although this was through a combination of both fibre and 4G LTE mobile networks. Thus, InfoCom believes that the actual fibre coverage could still be far below the reported data (there is no reported figures for actual fibre coverage in the country yet, but there were already 46.5m km of fibre optics deployed in the country as of end-3Q19). -Click here to find out more information about this report.

Published: 2020-02-13

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