Due to the vast end-user base, the Central and Eastern European (CEE) information and communication technology (ICT) industry has not managed to keep pace with customer demand despite its rapid development since 2002. However, it makes up for quantity with quality and matches its Western European counterparts in the sophistication of its IT hardware, software, and telecommunications solutions. Being a late starter in the ICT industry, the CEE countries have the advantage of possessing advanced telecommunications networks, especially in the mobile telephony segment.
New Country Industry Forecasts from the Frost & Sullivan Economic Research and Analytics (ERA) team addressing the Czech ICT Industry, reveals that opportunities exist in the segments of e-business applications, alternative wired and wireless access technologies for Internet connectivity, software security products, broadband services, and end-user markets of Internet service providers (ISPs), banks, and insurance companies.
If you are interested in a virtual brochure, which provides manufacturers, end users, and other industry participants with an overview of the latest political, economic and social analysis of the Czech ICT Industry then send an email to Joanna Lewandowska, Corporate Communications, at Joanna.lewandowska[.]frost.com with your full name, company name, title, telephone number, email address, city, state, and country. We will send you the overview by email upon receipt of the above information.
The CEE ICT industry is dominated by three countries – Poland, the Czech Republic, and Hungary, with the Czech Republic accounting for around 20.0 percent of the total share in 2006. As with most CEE countries, the Czech Republic’s telecommunications sector has stolen the march over the IT sector in terms of size and growth rate. The former contributed 5.3 percent to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) in 2006, mainly on the back of its mobile telephony segment, which has grown very rapidly since 2004.
Meanwhile, in the IT sector, the hardware segment, which led in 2001, gave way to software and services segments in 2006. Customers are increasingly leaning toward e-business applications (online transactions), particularly in small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Since fixed line penetration rates are low in the country, opportunities abound in alternative access technologies for Internet connectivity.
Technology advancements, application solutions and integration, limited skill base at user sites, and growing preference for networking and connectivity are making IT services a dynamic segment. Wire and wireless technologies for networks that enable high-speed broadband transfer and satellite system equipment have bright prospects. The country’s access to fixed wireless access (FWA) technology has brought opportunities to SMEs.
“With large enterprises equipped with enterprise application server (EAS), vendors focus on scaled-down products aimed at the lucrative SME segment,” say Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Subhadra Chandrasekhar and Team Leader Farheen Pasha of the ERA group. “ISPs, banks, and insurance companies are driving the IT hardware segment and software security products such as public key infrastructure (PKI) applications, firewalls, and products for digital signatures to show potential, particularly with the activation of the Electronic Signature Law.”
Meanwhile, home users are going to benefit from the spread of affordable broadband access through cable. As many cable companies continuously invest in cable networks to provide broadband connection, end users will enjoy better and faster broadband services. The Government’s National Broadband Strategy specifically aims at increasing the usage of broadband technology.
“The Czech Republic has closely coordinated its national policy and development strategy for its information society with European Union (EU) policies,” notes Chandrasekhar. “The development goals (until 2010) for the EU were set out by the Lisbon Strategy and this has triggered a number of activities in the Czech information society, particularly under the umbrella of the eEurope 2005 Action Plan.”
In 2006, the Czech Republic’s annual ICT expenditure accounted for 10.0 percent of the GDP – the highest in the EU. The Government plans to increase the rate of computer literacy in the country, ICT penetration rates, and the overall growth of the industry. It has introduced programs such as e-Government to provide access to all public services online.
The Government has also implemented the Electronic Communications Act to help telecommunication participants by specifying the tariff rates and other information regarding mobile telephony services. The combined effort of the Government (through programs such as eCzech) and the private sector has improved the country’s ICT infrastructure, enabling development of other access technologies such as asymmetric digital subscriber line (ADSL).
“The need to replace aging technology and the increase in competitiveness of businesses and industries due to the transition of the Czech economy to a market driven one coincided with the establishment of new businesses,” observes Pasha. “This prompted increasing foreign direct investments and the phenomenal global growth of IT, which in turn, led to high demand and dynamism in the Czech ICT market during 2001 to 2006.”
The Government’s sustained emphasis on developing technical education has led to an increase in the skilled workforce or technically educated people. The country has numerous technical universities and the students are comfortable with foreign languages. According to the European Commission, a high 71.0 percent of the Czech workforce (even the unemployed) has basic IT training. These workers show high responsiveness to training and are motivated by continuous professional and personal growth.
The Country Industry Forecast research addressing the Czech ICT Industry is part of the Frost & Sullivan Information and Communications Technology GPS subscription services. The Political and Policy Analysis of the Czech ICT Industry provides a detailed coverage of the political establishment, general economic and industry specific policies, and their impact on the industry. The Economic Analysis provides an overview of the market size, a discussion of drivers as well as restraints, and an analysis of market structure in the context of the overall Czech economy. The Social, Infrastructure, and Labor Analysis studies the labor market dynamics, infrastructure conditions, and consumption profile of end users. Analyst interviews and briefings are available to the press.
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