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Sri Lanka Communications - 2024


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Telephones - fixed lines

total subscriptions: 2,582,154 (2022 est.)

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 12 (2022 est.)

Telephones - mobile cellular

total subscriptions: 31,237,303 (2022 est.)

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 143 (2022 est.)

Telecommunication systems

general assessment: Sri Lanka’s fixed-line telephony market was one of the very few in the world to experience a significant upsurge in subscriptions in 2020; while the country suffers from a relatively poor fixed-line infrastructure and a correspondingly strong mobile sector, demand for traditional phone services increased 14% in 2020; preliminary results suggest a further jump of up to 13% can also be expected in 2021; this will take Sri Lanka’s fixed-line penetration to levels not seen since 2013; the most reason behind the market’s reversal of fortunes is the Covid-19 crisis and Sri Lanka’s ensuring lock downs; these forced much of the population back inside and reverting to ‘traditional’ methods of communication for both voice and data services; the fixed broadband market was equally robust, growing 20% in 2020 alone; Sri Lanka possesses a relatively low number of computers per household so the fixed broadband market’s success comes off a small base; the one area of the telecommunications market that experienced a fall was the mobile segment; up until the start of the pandemic, Sri Lanka had a very high mobile penetration rate of 155%; this near-saturation level reflected the preponderance for subscribers to carry multiple SIM cards to take advantage of cheaper on-net call rates; the reduction in demand and traffic because of the pandemic led to a sharp drop in the number of active subscriptions, down to just 135% – a 17% decline in just one year; the market is expected to bounce back quickly, as soon as the country eases back on its lock down measures and reduces travel restrictions; it will also be boosted, come 2022, by the anticipated launch of commercial 5G mobile services (2021)

domestic: fixed-line is 12 per 100 and mobile-cellular is 143 per 100 (2022)

international: country code - 94; landing points for the SeaMeWe -3,-5,  Dhiraagu-SLT Submarine Cable Network, WARF Submarine Cable, Bharat Lanka Cable System and the Bay of Bengal Gateway submarine cables providing connectivity to Asia, Africa, Southeast Asia, Australia, the Middle East, and Europe; satellite earth stations - 2 Intelsat (Indian Ocean) (2019)

Broadcast media

government operates 5 TV channels and 19 radio channels; multi-channel satellite and cable TV subscription services available; 25 private TV stations and about 43 radio stations; 6 non-profit TV stations and 4 radio stations

Internet country code


Internet users

total: 14.74 million (2021 est.)

percent of population: 67% (2021 est.)

Broadband - fixed subscriptions

total: 1,781,530 (2020 est.)

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 8 (2020 est.)

NOTE: The information regarding Sri Lanka on this page is re-published from the 2024 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Sri Lanka 2024 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Sri Lanka 2024 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.

This page was last modified 04 May 24, Copyright © 2024 ITA all rights reserved.