The only English-speaking nation in South America, Guyana has a small population with among the lowest GDP rates in the region. Nevertheless, GDP growth has been impressive in recent years and economic growth projections further into 2016 are encouraging.
Guyana’s fixed-line teledensity is above average for Latin America and much higher than would be expected given the country’s poor economic indicators. Mobile and broadband penetration, however, are well below the regional average.
Guyana Telephone and Telegraph (GT&T, rebranded as GTT+ in late 2015), controlled by Atlantic Tele-Network (ATN), has a monopoly over fixed-line services, but it competes with Digicel in the mobile market.
GTT+’s fixed-line monopoly was renewed for 20 years in December 2010, but before renewing it the government drafted a new Telecommunications Amendment Bill aimed at opening the telecom sector to competition. The bill was abandoned in September 2011 shortly before the national elections, but is again to be put before the National Assembly, this time benefiting from inputs from both GTT and Digicel. It includes provisions to fund a Universal Services Fund through a tax on telcos’ revenue.