Libya vows to end telecommunications monopoly
Libya’s government has confirmed plans to open the country’s telecommunications industry to competition, allow foreign investment and end the long-standing market monopoly.
Prime Minister Abd Alhamid Aldabaiba said this was necessary in order to improve the poor quality of service and reduce the high cost of communication.
Aldabaiba said, “The need to reduce the high cost of communication is urgent since Libyans are now glued to their mobile phones and constantly using them.”
He added that he was aware that the state dominated monopoly would likely struggle if it faced competition from private telecommunications operators “but that move was necessary.”
Aldabaiba said local telecommunications services are too basic and “not the same as those commonly found in the rest of the world.”
The Prime Minister also said the government will allow Libyans to purchase shares and invest in telecommunications on the local stock market.
The market is dominated by Libyana which has over 55% market share, followed closely by Al-madar with 44%.
Last month, the General Assembly of the Libyan Post, Telecommunications, and Information Technology Holding Company (LPTIC), headed by Aldabaiba, appointed a new board of directors under leadership of Mohamed Bin Ayad with specific instructions to improve the country’s telecommunications.
According to Digital 2021: Libya, the country has 11.62 million mobile phone connections and 3.19 million internet users, while the number of social media users is at 6 million.