Nigeria’s Active Mobile Subscriptions Hit 220.5 million In July
The Nigerian Communications Commission, (NCC) has reported a slight increase in active subscriptions across mobile networks of MTN, Globacom, Airtel, and 9mobile by 0.4 per cent to 220.5 million in July, from the 219.7 million subscriptions recorded by the mobile network operators (MNOs) in the preceding month
The commission, in its latest industry statistics, indicated that the marginal addition of 770,889 in July was recorded after four months of steady decline in subscriptions.
An analysis of the subscriptions data reflected that the growth in the subscription database was primarily as a result of new subscriptions to MTN network, which gained 678,008 new subscriptions in the month under review.
Based on the latest data on actively connected lines, the country’s teledensity, which measures the number of active telephone connections per 100 inhabitants living within an area and is calculated based on a population estimate of 190 million, also rose to 115.70 from 115.30% recorded in June.
The commission’s report showed that the networks’ subscriptions in the month under review showed that MTN, the largest operator by subscriber number, recorded 678,008 increase in its subscriptions, thereby raising its active subscriptions to 85.3 million from 84.6 million it recorded in June 2023.
Also, 9mobile also gained 176, 105 new subscriptions, which increased its total active connected lines to 13.7 million from 13.5 million in June while Globacom added 23,565 new subscriptions in the month to record 61.4 million total subscriptions.
However, Airtel, the third-largest operator by subscriber number, recorded a decline in its database by 106,789 in the month under review to 60 million.
Analysts say that the marginal gain in the nation’s active mobile subscriptions in July may indicate that the MNOs may have completed the disconnection of lines registered by under 18 subscribers, which led to the steady decline in subscriptions between March and June this year.
It would be recalled that the telecom industry regulator recently reviewed the SIM card ownership guidelines by adjusting the minimum age from 16 to 18 years, which implies that young Nigerians under 18 cannot register a SIM.
The commission, in a statement issued then on the regulatory measure, hinged its decision on its efforts to protect minors from telecom risks in the country as well as constitutional provisions.