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Overview

The telecommunications infrastructure in South Africa is spread all over the country and its service is predominantly mobile https://www.dtps.gov.za/, dominated by five companies as described below.

The country is benefiting from investment in fibre optics networks by commercial players, currently in all cities, and rollout to cover the entire country is still ongoing.

The country's major priorities in telecommunication are ICT Policy Review, The Electronic Communications Amendment Bill, National Broadband Policy while also other key areas of priority are Broadcasting Digital Migration Policy, Schools Connectivity, Community Radio, Rural Development.

In general, there do not appear to be any concerns regarding the pricing or availability of connectivity. Factors such as poor network quality, a lack of standardised network specifications, high backbone network pricing, unbalanced spectrum charging mechanisms and a wide range of economic factors have resulted in a lack of infrastructure sharing, duplication of backbone networks and a lack of investment in telecommunications networks in rural areas to provide voice and broadband services.

For more information on telecoms contacts, please see the following link: List of Members | ISPA

Telephone Services

Is there an existing landline telephone network?

Yes

Does it allow international calls?

Yes  

Number and Length of Downtime Periods (on average)

 Virtually no downtime

Mobile Phone Providers

Approximate Percentage of National Coverage

6% dial-up connection.
99.7% mobile broadband penetration.

GSMA - Network Coverage Maps

Telecommunications Regulations

South Africa’s Communications Regulatory Authority falls under the jurisdiction of department of telecommunications and postal services. This is responsible for broad band ICT policy review, child online protection and defining policies and strategies and serving as an arbitrator and guarantor of law enforcement.

Regulations on Usage and Import

 

Regulations in Place?

Regulating Authority

Satellite

 Yes

ICASA

HF Radio

Yes

ICASA

UHF/VHF/HF Radio: Handheld, Base and Mobile

Yes

ICASA

UHF/VHF Repeaters

Yes

ICASA

GPS

No

N/A

VSAT

Yes

ICASA

Individual Network Operator Licenses Required

 

Frequency Licenses Required

It is necessary to obtain authorisation from the department of telecommunications and postal services to obtain a frequency license for all type of communications (VSAT, HF, VHF).

Existing Humanitarian Telecoms Systems

Does WFP or other UN agencies have private networks such as VSAT used in South Africa

Existing UN Telecommunication Systems

 

WFP

UNICEF

UNHCR

FAO

UNDP

WHO

VHF Frequencies

 

 

 

 

Y

 

HF Frequencies

 

 

 

 

 

 

Locations of Repeaters

 

 

 

 

Pretoria

 

VSAT

Y

 

 

 

 

 


Internet Service Providers (ISPs)

Internet connectivity is available in most of the country, mainly through the service providers listed in ISP report for South Africa by mybroadband.co.za

Internet Service Providers

Are there ISPs available?

Yes

If yes, are they privately or government owned?

Both

Dial-up only?

No

Approximate Rates (local currency and USD - $)

Dial-up

n/a

Broadband

 Fibre prices in South Africa – Network and ISP showdown (mybroadband.co.za)

Max Leasable ‘Dedicated’ Bandwidth

Uncapped GB

Additional information about Internet service providers can be found in the Internet Service Providers’ Association (ISPA) website.

Mobile Network Operators (MNOs)

N/A

 

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