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Tue 29 Mar 2016 03:03 PM

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Arab internet users forecast to rise to 226m by 2018

New report also says penetration rate will jump to more than 55%, with GCC states leading the way

Arab internet users forecast to rise to 226m by 2018
(AFP/Getty Images)

The number of internet users in the Arab world is expected to rise to about 226 million by 2018, according to the Arab Knowledge Economy report 2015-2016.

The report said the internet penetration rate will jump from about 37.5 percent in 2014 to over 55 percent in 2018, or about 7 percent above the estimated world average of 3.6 billion users.

Developed by Orient Planet Research, the study showed the six GCC states led the Arab region in terms of ICT indicators in 2015.

Bahrain led the way, registering 74.15 percent in internet user penetration, while Kuwait registered the highest in mobile subscription penetration with 194.62 percent.

Abdul Kader Al Kamli, research consultant, Orient Planet Research, said: "The Arab World is in the midst of change following a number of social and political upheavals. In the face of these dynamic reforms, many countries within the region continue to make great strides in their efforts to shift to a knowledge-based economy." 

The Arab ICT Use Index examines four major indicators for each of the 18 MENA economies - mobile phone subscribers, fixed-line subscribers, internet users, and installed computers.

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