IDC: Telecom services to hit $85B in Latin America in 2005

Latin American consumers and businesses will continue to increase their use of the Internet, data transmission services and mobile communication in the coming years, which will help push telecommunication services revenue in the region from US$64 billion in 2000 to $85 billion in 2005, according to a study released Wednesday by International Data Corp. (IDC).

Due to economic troubles in the region, spending by Latin Americans in telecommunication services will grow only two per cent in 2001, compared with 2000, and three per cent in 2002, compared with 2001, but is expected to pick up from 2003 to 2005, according to IDC. Through 2005, revenue from local telephony will grow modestly while revenue from long-distance services will actually decrease from year to year, IDC said.

Meanwhile, the ever-increasing popularity of mobile services will make the number of mobile subscribers surpass the number of traditional telephone landlines in Latin America by 2003, IDC said. By the end of 2001, Latin America will have 20 traditional landlines and 16 mobile phones for every 100 people.

Brazil, the largest economy in the region, will close 2001 with seven per cent less telecommunication services revenue than in 2000, due to local and regional economic troubles. On the other hand, M