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2025 Capex outlook: financing the 5G era

GSMA Intelligence has expanded its coverage of operator capex, with a complete set of country-level capex projections now available from 2000 to 2025, available via our platform. The extended dataset incorporates our assumptions on the investment required to support the rollout of 5G networks, as well as continued spending on 4G, which will remain the dominant access technology globally over the forecast horizon.

We forecast that between 2019 and 2025 inclusive, mobile operators across the world will spend $1.3 trillion on capex, with more than three quarters of that 5G-related. We predict a more stable capex trend relative to previous generations across the seven-year forecast period, as operators will try to maintain the capex-to-revenue ratio below a certain threshold. 5G investment timing remains critical for those in the mobile industry. Our insight into the capex profile of each country over the next seven years, backed up by rigorous analysis of spectrum awards and planned commercial 5G launches, provides valuable insight for all those with a stake in the 5G ecosystem.

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