Syria

ETC Activities

The Emergency Telecommunications Cluster (ETC) was formally activated in January 2013 to provide common telecommunication services to the humanitarian community responding to the crisis in Syria and surrounding countries.

The humanitarian community rely on technology services for all aspects of their operations from reporting and coordination, to ensuring the security and safety of staff in the field. Since the Cluster was activated, ETC has deployed common services across the region.

As global ETC lead, WFP works in collaboration with partner agencies including UNHCR, UNDSS and UNICEF to deliver common services. Regular ETC Syria teleconferences ensure coordination and information-sharing on a global level, and working group meetings are held at a local level.

ETC Syria operates under the “Whole of Syria” approach which encompasses Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey where the ETC provides services.

Current Operations
Asset 680
Emergency
Key Documents
Presentation
Asset 767
SitRep
Asset 772
Dashboard
Asset 767
Minutes
Asset 767

ICT Profile

Country background
Country name
Syria
Capital city
Damascus
Name of national disaster management agency

N/A

Name of telecommunications ministry

Ministry of Communications and Technology

Name of telecommunications regulator

Syrian Telecommunications and Post Regulatory Authority

Population

21.32 million

Country narrative

Syria is a country in the Middle East, with a coastline at the eastern Mediterranean Sea. It is bordered by Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, and Turkey, and it shares maritime borders with Cyprus.

The country occupies an area of 185,180 km², and is home to a variety of ethnic and religious groups, including Kurds, Armenians, Assyrians, Christians, Druze. Syria is a country with a predominantly Muslim population, 12% of Syrians are Alawite Shia and 74% Arab Sunni.

According to the World Bank, Türkiye’s geographic, climatic, and socioeconomic conditions make it highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change and other environmental hazards, making adaptation and resilience important priorities. Türkiye has high vulnerability in most climate vulnerability dimensions selected by the World Bank. Its transport system is more vulnerable than comparable countries, and the country is experiencing food security issues, increasing water stress, and unprecedented disaster events, such as the 2021 forest fire season. This vulnerability is due to a combination of climate factors, population exposure (for example, share of population exposed to floods and forest fires), and socioeconomic factors (such as share of agriculture in the economy).

Currency

Syrian pound

Key ICT statistics
Fixed-telephone subscriptions per 100 inhabitants

13

Mobile-cellular subscriptions per 100 inhabitants

80

Fixed (wired)-broadband subscriptions per 100 inhabitants

7.39

Mobile-broadband subscriptions per 100 inhabitants

79.7

GSMA mobile connectivity index score

N/A

3G coverage % of population

85%

Regulations and rules
Regolations/Rules
Type of regulation
Disaster management
Policy name

Local Administration Act of 1971

Description

The Local Administration Act of 1971 addresses emergency management in Syria and it regulates the formation and tasks of local authorities. It describes one of the seven categories of tasks for the Governorate Councils to be Security and Order. This category describes disaster management tasks as “ensuring the protection of public property,” “implementing procedures related to disaster prevention,” and “providing the needs of civil defense and public safety during times of peace, war, and emergencies; building and equipping hideouts; and training citizens on related tasks.” 

Type of regulation
Telecommunications
Policy name

The Syrian Telecommunication Law (Issued by Law No. 18 of 2010)

Description

The law sets the rules for regulation and development of the telecommunications sector, restructures the telecommunications sector and specifies the roles of the key stakeholders, as well as seek to ensure fair competition among Operators and Service Providers.

Type of regulation
UAV
Description

Drone operations are not regulated in Syria as the Syrian agency responsible for drone safety, SCAA, has not codified drone use regulations in Syria. 

Communications service providers
Mobile network operator (MNO)
Company name
MTN
GSMA HCC signatory
No
Parent company name (majority holding)
MTN Group
Service description
Previously known as Areeba, MTN Group offers GSM and 3.5G broadband 4G (LTE) services. In 2021, it confirmed its market exit in August with immediate effect.
Coverage map (provide URL)
https://www.gsma.com/coverage/#445
Mobile money service available
Yes
Mobile money service info
Users can load their MTN Mobile Money accounts with cash at agent locations nationwide and then make domestic and international P2P money transfers, buy mobile phone top-up, purchase goods or pay bills.
Voice and SMS services
Yes
3G/4G data services
Yes
Mobile network operator (MNO)
Company name
Syriatel
GSMA HCC signatory
No
Parent company name (majority holding)
Rami Makhlouf
Service description
The company offers services including calls, news, message, GSM and internet services.
Coverage map (provide URL)
https://www.gsma.com/coverage/#459
Voice and SMS services
Yes
3G/4G data services
Yes