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Nigeria has Africa’s largest mobile phone subscribers

Nigeria with 61 million subscribers, is Africa’s largest mobile telecommunications market in Africa, according to a report from Pyramid Research and published in Computerworld Kenya

South Africa, with a population of 45 million, has been Africa’s largest mobile service market, with 42.4 million subscribers in 2007, expected to rise to 48.5 million by 2010, according to Market Research Corp. Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa, with 135 million people.

Nigeria’s continued growth over the next five years is expected to trigger more intense competition among a growing number of network operators, said Yejide Onabule, analyst at Pyramid Research and author of the report.

The Nigerian telecom market grew by 23 percent in 2008, generating US$8.4 billion in overall telecom service revenue, said Onabule. With mobile subscriber penetration at just 42 percent, Nigeria’s total telecom revenue is expected to increase at a rate of 5.7 percent from US$8.42 billion in 2008 to $11.14 billion in 2013.

Since liberalization of the market in 2003, Nigeria’s telecom industry has experienced exceptional growth rates, which is attracting new operators.

“The bulk of service revenue will continue to come from mobile, which will generate 83 percent of total service revenue over the next five years,” said Onabule.