Nigeria records marginal drop in registered SIMs


Nigeria mobile telephony

from OKORO CHINEDU in Lagos, Nigeria
Nigeria Bureau
LAGOS, (CAJ News) – THE number of active mobile numbers in Nigeria declined by 630 000 in March after operators disconnected clients that failed to link their subscriber identity module (SIM) cards with their national identity number (NIN).

The data, the latest released by the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC), indicates there are 219,3 million active lines in the West African country. Data for a certain month is released two months later.

The drop in March followed a slight increase of 0,7 percent increase in registered SIMs in the previous month. Consequently, the country’s teledensity dropped to 109 percent in March 2024 from 110 percent the previous month.

Tunde Abidoye, Equity Research Analyst at FBN Capital, noted the monthly reduction in mobile lines could be primarily attributed to the NIN-SIM linkage policy imposed by the sector’s regulator.

“As a result, network operators have disconnected mobile lines that have not linked their SIM cards to their NINs,” Abidoye said.

Regarding the share composition, the market dynamics remain largely unchanged, FBN Capital noted.

MTN Nigeria (MTNN) accounted for the largest share, with around 37,4 percent of total active subscribers.

This was closely followed by Airtel and Globacom, which had subscriber market shares of 28,9 percent and 28,4 percent respectively.

9Mobile, the smallest of the four Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) operators, had a market share of 5,3 percent.

All figures as of the end of March.

Implemented since 2020, the SIM/NIN harmonisation programme makes it compulsory for all  subscribers to link their ID numbers to SIM registration records.

This according to the government is an effort to curb cyber crime as well violent crimes such as terror and kidnapping that are rife in Nigeria.

– CAJ News

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