The number of fixed-line connections at the end of 2007 was 5.4 million, compared with 5.8 million a year earlier.

The GCC fixed-line market is dominated by local monopolies.

Kuwait’s Communications Ministry has a monopoly over fixed-line telecoms services there.

Among other markets, Batelco provides all fixed-line services in Bahrain, Omantel in Oman, Qtel in Qatar and Saudi Telecom in Saudi Arabia.

The UAE is the only market to have multiple operators. Fixed-line services there are provided by Emirates Integrated Telecommunications (Du) and Etisalat.