Telecommunications - Peru - Regional

Nokia: Peru has highest mobile growth rate in LatAm

Nokia: Peru has highest mobile growth rate in LatAm

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Peru has the fastest growing mobile telephony market in Latin America, according to Paulo Passos, Latin America communications manager for Finnish handset manufacturer Nokia (NYSE: NOK).

The country's mobile market is growing at annual rates of 30% and by the end of 2007 one out of two Peruvians will have a mobile telephone, local news service 24 Horas quoted Passos as saying.

Passos said that other countries in Latin America such as Argentina and Venezuela are growing at annual rates of 25%. Mexico and Brazil could reach similar rates of growth in the long term, he added.

Mobile penetration in Peru was 43.7% in June and the 50% rate expected for the end of the year would equate to approximately 13mn users, according to the executive. Peru's mobile penetration figure could reach 60% by the end of 2008, Nokia believes.

"Until 2005, Peru was among the most backward countries in Latin America in terms of [penetration] and growth. However, the country has experienced a boom in mobile telephony in the last two years," Passos said.

Nokia believes mobile penetration in the capital Lima was 70% at the end of the first half of 2007 while penetration in the provinces averaged 15%. Passos stressed that the provinces therefore have strong potential for growth in mobile telephony.