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Analysis: MENA pay-TV continue to fall

January 18, 2021

Pay-TV revenues for the 20 countries in the Middle East and North Africa region fell by 14 per cent between 2016 and 2020 to $2.74 billion, according to the Middle East and North Africa Pay TV Forecasts report from analyst firm Digital TV Research. Revenues will continue to fall slowly – to $2.52 billion in 2026. The 2026 revenues will be 23 per cent lower than 2016.

“Five countries will contribute 78 per cent of the region’s pay-TV revenues in 2026,” advises Simon Murray, Principal Analyst at Digital TV Research. “Turkey and Israel together will supply nearly half of the total. There are few winners. Eight of the 20 countries will lose revenues between 2020 and 2026.”

Turkish pay-TV revenues will reach $752 million in 2026; 17 per cent lower than the peak year of 2016. However, the number of pay-TV subscribers will grow from 7.27 million in 2020 to 7.64 million in 2026.

Israel is experiencing cord-cutting. It will lose 28 per cent of its pay-TV subs between 2020 to 2026. Digital TV Research forecasts that Israel’s pay TV revenues will halve between 2016 and 2026. Beyond these figures, Israel’s OTT sector will grow significantly.

For the 13 Arabic-speaking countries, pay-TV revenues will remain at about $1 billion despite subscriber numbers increasing by 18 per cent to 4 million.

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