Will AT&T and Verizon Enter Argentina Telecom Market?

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According to the country’s latest policy, Telecom giants would be able to offer multiple services simultaneously

Most recently, Argentina’s government changed its policies according to which foreign telecommunication services can now start their operations in the country. As part of the current news, the move is expected to increase competition in the country’s Telecom sector and bring in multi-billion dollar investment; however, industry analysts remain skeptical whether AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) and Verizon would enter the market.

According to the latest policy, Telecom giants would be able to offer fixed line, wireless, Internet, and cable TV services simultaneously. The aforesaid services are offered by both, AT&T and Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) simultaneously in the US that compete neck to neck in the country.

Analysts related to the industry are of the opinion that as part of the regulatory changes, AT&T would be able to offer its telecom services along with DirecTV in Argentina. The other companies including Cablevision SA—cable network provider—would be able to offer the 4G wireless services.

Furthermore, in order to benefit the local Telco, only Telefonica, Claro, and Telecom Argentina have been permitted to offer paid television starting from January 2018. This would allow the local companies to have an edge over other foreign new competitors; however, they would have to compete hard to retain their market share once giants such as AT&T and Verizon enter the border.

In related news, as expected, local Argentina telecom companies are not pleased with the decision; Telefonica is reportedly evaluating judicial action against the government. As per analysts’ common opinion, local phone companies would be at disadvantage compared to cable operators amid increased competition; the former would need to make investments to improve their network spread.

All in all, the announcement has come as a major opportunity for Telecom companies to invest in an untapped market. However, it is yet to see if AT&T and Verizon will make a move in South American region.

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