Nepal | July 08, 2020

Internet penetration at 61pc of population

More than 6,581 new users are connected to the internet every day in Nepal

Sujan Dhungana
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Kathmandu, October 4

On an average, over 6,581 new users are connected to the internet every day in Nepal.

The latest Management Information System (MIS) report prepared by Nepal Telecommunications Authority (NTA) shows that internet penetration in the country reached 61.09 per cent of the total population till mid-July.

As per the NTA MIS report, 16,186,759 people in the country had access to internet/data services till mid-July — an increment in internet users by 2,402,141 compared to internet penetration of 13,784,618 recorded till mid-July, 2016. The calculation based on the aforementioned data show that more than 6,581 new users in the country are connected to internet every day.

Data Subscribers


FY 2015-16

FY 2016-17

Nepal Telecom






Smart Telecom



United Telecom Ltd



CG Communication



Other ISPs






Concerned government officials have said the growing use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in every sector has led to the increasing data consumption and demand in Nepal.

“Use of ICT is crucial in all sectors, including health, education, entertainment, industry and agriculture. These sectors have been consuming internet at high rate, thereby contributing to the surge in internet demand in the country,” said Min Prasad Aryal, spokesperson for NTA — the telecommunication sector regulator of Nepal.

According to the MIS report, the market share (internet) of Nepal Telecom (NT) dwindled to 52.02 per cent in the last fiscal year compared to its internet market share of 55.15 per cent in the previous fiscal. However, NT’s data/internet subscriber base had increased by 808,179 to 8,420,653 in 2016-17.

Meanwhile, internet market share of private telecom firm, Ncell, rose to 44.99 per cent in 2016-17 compared to its market share in data of 42.48 per cent in 2015-16. As per the MIS report, 1,098,772 new users subscribed to the internet service of Ncell in 2016-17, taking the total number of Ncell internet/data subscribers to 6,954,236.

However, NT still reigns the internet market in the country.

The MIS report also shows that 97 per cent of internet service is availed through mobile broadband (mobile phones, limited mobility) while only three per cent of data is availed under fixed mobility services like wi-fi, internet through fibre cables including the internet services delivered by internet service providers (ISPs).

The aforementioned internet penetration rate, however, may not be very accurate as a single person may be using more than one SIM. At the same time, the mentioned
statistics regard the internet subscriber of ISPs as single user, even though the fixed mobility internet allows numerous users to connect to the internet at the same time.

NTA officials believe the recent launch of 4G internet service in Nepal and high priority given by the telecom companies to data services over voice has pushed up the internet penetration in the country.

A version of this article appears in print on October 05, 2017 of The Himalayan Times.

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