How mobile telecommunications in the MENA region are creating jobs and improving everyday life

Monday, February 27, 2006

The mobile phone industry in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region is creating hundreds of thousands of new jobs inside and outside the industry, boosting economic growth and fostering social harmony and security, according to a new report released today.

MTC, the fastest growing mobile operator in the region, published the results of a first-of-its-kind detailed survey of the industry, ?Mobility for One Language, Diverse Cultures? at the 3GSM World Congress at Barcelona. The report highlights both economic and social effects of mobile communications usage on the MENA region. Its results show that mobile revenues alone accounted for five percent of the increase in GDP in Bahrain between 2002 and 2004.

In Jordan, the number of employees in the mobile sector increased by 42 percent over the four-year period of liberalization. Elsewhere, the data produced in this extensive report revealed that some mobile operators represent more than 30 percent of a total stock market(…)Al Barrak added, ?We are very interested by the finding that in Egypt for every job created in the mobile sector, eight other jobs are created in different sectors of the economy, as well as the conclusion that if ICT (Information and Communication Technologies) investment in Egypt were doubled it would create 1.3 million new jobs and the rate of GDP growth would rocket from 4 percent to 8 percent and more.”

(…)On the micro-business level, the survey found that the mobile phone has become a vital tool for businesses with a reported 32 percent increase in profitability for those interviewed in Bahrain and Jordan and a 25 percent gain in Tunisia. Additionally, 62 percent of respondents in Tunisia believed the mobile has helped lower costs by reducing travel needs.

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Source: Mobile Africa (link opens in a new window)