2012: MCA Business Perceptions Survey - Electronic Communications

This survey, which is the first of its kind to be carried out by the MCA, is also intended to complement the findings of other surveys conducted last year amongst private households.

Results show that 82% of Maltese businesses have a fixed line connection, 64% make use of broadband Internet while 46% pay for mobile phones and respective services used by its employees for work purposes. Results also indicate that 18% of all Maltese businesses procure telecom services as a bundle.

With regard to fixed telephony services, circa 98% of businesses that do not have a fixed line connection resort to mobile telephony. 68% of businesses only have one fixed line connection, 30% have between 2-4 lines, while 2% of businesses have more than 5 lines. The survey also shows that 8% of businesses with a fixed line connection are subscribed to more than one operator. Interestingly, 45% of businesses with a fixed telephone connection have a prepaid subscription. This is relatively higher than the overall market statistic where only 18% of total fixed telephony connections are prepaid (MCA Statistics 2012). 

In order to be able to benefit from the different service packages available on the market and the characteristics of each, circa 4% of those businesses which pay for mobile phones and services used by the employees for work purposes are subscribed to more than one operator. According to this survey the majority of businesses (70%) making use of mobile phones for work related matters are on postpaid type of plan. This contrasts significantly with the findings of the Household Consumer Survey (MCA August 2011) where only 20% of households claimed to have a mobile subscription of this type.

With regard to broadband Internet services, 90% of businesses in Malta have a standard type of connection while 8% have a tailor made connection. The survey also shows that 43% of businesses in Malta have just one Internet connection, 22% have between 2 to 4 connections, 6% have between 5 to 9 connections while 1% have more than 10 connections.

The survey indicates that there is overall satisfaction with the telecom services provided in Malta – 79% with respect to fixed telephony, 82% in the case of mobile telephony services and 76% with respect to broadband Internet. In terms of pricing, the majority of businesses think fixed telephony and broadband rates are reasonable or very reasonable. On the other hand, mobile tariff rates are still perceived to be on the high side with only 34% of businesses expressing the view that mobile rates are reasonable or very reasonable.

It also emerges from the survey that on average only 6% of all businesses have specific service level agreements (SLAs) with the telecom operators. In the main it is large businesses that have such agreements (44%) as opposed to small (7%) and medium (20%) sized businesses. Unsurprisingly, compared to small and medium sized enterprises, large businesses also have a greater bargaining power when procuring telecom services.

The survey also shows that 22% of medium to large sized businesses in Malta use high-end data services such as Ethernet, IP-VPN and Microwave links. 33% of those claiming to be using other data services fall within the business service category. 21% fall within the tourism and hospitality sector. Another 21% fall within the manufacturing sector. Moreover 88% of businesses using these types of services claim to be satisfied or highly satisfied with the overall quality. 

View Survey Results