Telecom growth rate slips 1.08%

Written by Corporate Bureau | New Delhi | Updated: Dec 30 2008, 05:48am hrs
The telecom sector, which so far had been beating slow down trends plaguing all other sectors in the economy seems to be joining the slow down bandwagon. The sector saw 1.08% decline in the new telephone connections during the month of November, according to the official data released here by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India on Monday.

A total of 10.18 million telephone connections (both wireline and wireless) were added in November as compared to 10.29 million connections in October, a Trai statement said.

India has emerged as the fastest growing telecom market adding over 9 million new subscribers each month. The slight dip in growth in November has not raised the alarm bells amongst the authorities as there was a similar decline in the month of April as well.

However, Trai is slightly concerned that the January-March revenue growth of the telecom operators may slow down a bit due to the new trend of decreasing minutes of usage meaning users are talking less. FE had reported in its December 29 edition that the regulator was scheduling a meeting in January with the incumbent as well as the new operators to enquire their plans over the year in order to know the investment plans and whether the new operators had placed any orders for equipments till now or not.

The total number of telephone connections reached 374.13 million at the end of November 2008 as compared to 363.95 million in October 2008. With this growth, the overall tele-density has reached 32.34% at the end of November 2008 as against 31.50% in October 2008.