Kenya: Safaricom’s Fibre Network Reaches 10,080-Km

Kenya’s leading mobile operator Safaricom has reported in its 2021 annual report that its fibre optic network in Kenya has now reached 10,080-km. The operator’s fibre deployment in the capital city Nairobi and at least 19 other towns across Kenya compares with 9,000-km in 2020, 6,700-km in 2019, and 5,000-km in 2018 (see Kenya: Safaricom’s Metro Fibre Network Reaches 9,000-Km). The operator also said that it’s fibre-to-the-building (FTTB) network reached 5,000 buildings, and that its fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) network passed 349,100 homes, of which 204,200 homes were connected. Safaricom first announced plans to build its own terrestrial fibre optic network ten years ago in November 2011, and began the roll out of its metro fibre network during 2013 (see Kenya: Safaricom Plans To Build Its Own Terrestrial Fibre Optic Network in Kenya). In October 2017, Safaricom announced that it had started an FTTH Regional Roll Out Plan to expand the coverage of its FTTH network to other towns outside... Read More →

Mauritius: International Bandwidth Jumps By 50 Gbps Since METISS Submarine Cable Enters Service

The used international Internet bandwidth of Mauritius reached 193.734 Gbps by June 2021, an increase of almost 50 Gbps compared to 144.973 Gbps reported six months ago in December 2020, according to latest statistics reported by the Information and Communication Technology Authority of Mauritius (ICTA) (see Mauritius: International Bandwidth of Mauritius Increases By 42.6% During 2020). This follows the entry service of the METISS (MElting poT Indianoceanic Submarine System) submarine cable in March 2021 (see Africa: METISS Submarine Cable Enters Service Connecting Mauritius, Reunion and Madagascar to South Africa). The 3,200-km METISS submarine cable has a design capacity of 24 Tbps and connects Mauritius, La Reunion and Madagascar to South Africa. Mauritius is already served by the SAFE and LION1 submarine cables, and the MARS cable connecting the islands of Mauritius and Rodrigues also entered service in 2019 (see Mauritius: MARS Submarine Cable Enters Service). ICTA previously reported... Read More →

Chad: Chad’s International Bandwidth Increases By 67% During 2020

Chad’s total international transmission bandwidth reached 21.231 Gbps in December 2020, a 67% increase compared to 12.751 Gbps in 2019, according to latest figures released by ARCEP (revised, see Chad: Chad’s International Bandwidth Increases Almost Fivefold To Reach 19 Gbps During 2019). ARCEP says in its 2020 annual report that this total figure includes both utilized and unutilized international voice and Internet transmission capacity. Chad’s total international transmission bandwidth was previously 4.003 Gbps in 2018, 2.135 Gbps in 2017, 1.405 Gbps in 2016, 1.002 Gbps in 2015, 270 Mbps in 2014, and 186 Mbps in 2013 (see also Chad: Chad’s International Bandwidth Increases By 87.5% During 2018). In December 2020 the market was split between Airtel which had 9.948 Gbps (4.788 Gbps in 2019), TiGO/ Moov which had 5.226 Gbps (4.850 Gbps in 2019), Sotelchad which had 207 Mbps (207 Mbps in 2019), and from ISPs which between them had 5.850 Gbps (2.906 Gbps in 2019). Of this total international... Read More →

Burkina Faso: First Phase of National Fibre Optic Backbone Project Completed

On 26 October 2021, the government of Burkina Faso officially inaugurated the first phase of the National Fibre Optic Backbone Project (Projet Backbone National des Télécommunications (PBNT) at a ceremony held in Koudougou. When fully completed, the PBNT project will see the deployment of 5,443-km of fibre optic network routes that will connect Ouagadougou (the capital) with 145 municipalities, including 45 provincial capitals, with new routes to neighbouring countries. In July 2013 the Council of Ministers of Burkina Faso authorized the signing of a contract with Huawei for the construction of a 5,443-km national fibre backbone. Three years after the conclusion of this contract the Council decided to implement the first phase of the backbone, a length of 2,001-km, and construction officially started in December 2017 (see Burkina Faso: 307-Km Fibre Link To Ghana Completed, First Phase of National Fibre Optic Backbone Project Started). Now completed, the first phase of the PBNT reaches... Read More →

Togo: Togo’s International Bandwidth Increases By 77% During 2020

Togo’s international Internet bandwidth reached 94.032 Gbps by 2020, a 77% increase compared to 53.184 Gbps in 2019. Fixed line incumbent Togo Telecom operates the WACS submarine cable in Togo with an allocated capacity of 480 Gbps, of which the utilisation increased from 11.08% in 2018 to 19.59% in 2019. Of this total of 94.032 GBps, Togo Telecom had an international bandwidth of 37.464 Gbps and CAFE Informatique had 3.071 Gbps according to regulator ARCEP (L'Autorité de régulation des communications électroniques et des postes). Five years ago in 2015, Togo’s international bandwidth was 7.396 Gbps, split between Togo Telecom (5 Gbps), mobile operator Togo Cellulaire (2 Gbps), CAFE Informatique which had an international bandwidth of 360 Mbps provided by satellite, and Atlantique Telecom (MOOV Togo) which had 36 Mbps (see Togo: Togo’s International Bandwidth Reaches 7.396 Gbps, December 2015). Source: ARCEP  Read More →

DRC: LIT Announces New Asia-USA Global Internet Transit Route via Africa Following Completion Of New Fibre Route Through DRC

On 19 October 2021, Liquid Intelligent Technologies (LIT) announced the launch of its shortest terrestrial fibre route between the East to the West coasts of Africa across the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), connecting submarine cable landing points in Mombasa (Kenya) to Muanda (DRC). The new route will also serve tens of millions of people in Africa's landlocked cities, towns, and villages. With the completion of this terrestrial route, Liquid establishes a new global Internet transit route between Asia and the USA through Africa, avoiding high-risk bottlenecks in the Middle East and Europe. For international customers, the corridor offers a low latency path to connect Asia, Africa and the USA as an alternative to busier routes via the Middle East and Europe In July 2021, Liquid Intelligent Technologies (LIT) announced a partnership with Facebook to build a 2,000-km long haul and metro fibre network in the DRC. According to a company press release, Facebook will invest in the fibre... Read More →

DRC: LIT Connects Kinshasa and Brazzaville With Wireless Optical Communication (WOC) Network

On 15 September 2021, Liquid Intelligent Technologies (LIT) announced that it has a deployed a cross-border network connecting Kinshasa, the capital of Democratic Republic of Congo and Brazzaville, the capital of Congo, using Wireless Optical Communication (WOC) from Project Taara at X, Alphabet’s moonshot factory. According to a company press release, Internet is more expensive in Kinshasa than in Brazzaville, despite the two cities being just 4.8 kilometres apart. The reason being, the two cities are separated by the Congo River, the second fastest and deepest river in the world, making it difficult to lay fibre across it. Historically this had resulted in operators directing traffic through their respective cable landing stations over 400-km away to create high-capacity information flow between them. In the same way traditional fibre uses light to carry data through cables in the ground, Taara’s Wireless Optical Communication links use narrow, invisible beams of light to deliver... Read More →

Benin: Benin Secures Loan For 700-Km Expansion Of Fibre Optic Network Under PDRHD Project

On 14 September 2021, the government of Benin signed a concessional loan agreement with China to implement the Projet de Densification du Réseau Haut Débit (PDRHD). The loan was for 265 million Yuan (USD 41 million), according to an official press release. The PDRHD project includes the deployment of a further 688.9-km of fibre optic network: 484.1-km of fibre optic backbone network in Mono, Zou, Collines and Nord Benin, and 204.8-km of metropolitan fibre optic network in 10 cities. This follows the completion of the Projet de Développement des Infrastructures des Télécommunications et des TIC (PDI2T) project, which saw the deployment of an additional 2,000-km of fibre optic network in Benin. Source: ADN, Government of Benin  Read More →

Tanzania: TANESCO Signs Agreement To Expand NICTBB Fibre Backbone

On 7 September 2021, the Tanzanian Ministry of Communications and Information Technology signed a memorandum of understanding with Tanzania Electricity Corporation (TANESCO) to use the fibre optic network deployed along its powerlines to expand the National ICT Broadband Backbone (NICTBB) operated by Tanzania Telecommunications Co Ltd (TTCL). Earlier this year, the Ministry also announced the signature of a contract for a 72-km extension running from Mangaka to Mtambaswala on the border with Mozambique (see Tanzania: NICTBB Building Cross-Border Fibre Link To Mozambique). Source: TANESCO  Read More →

Niger: Niger’s International Bandwidth Reaches 188 Gbps, December 2020

Niger’s international Internet bandwidth reached a total of 188.152 Gbps by December 2020, according to the latest figures released by Autorité de Régulation des Communications Électroniques et de La Poste (ARCEP) in its 2020 annual report. This was split between five operators: Zamani Telecom (previously Orange, with 72.5 Gbps), Airtel (Celtel) Niger (57.12 Gbps), Atlantique Telecom (44.928 Gbps), Niger Telecom (10.6 Gbps), and Liptinfor (3.004 Gbps). Of this total of 188.152 Gbps, 179.848 Gbps was supplied by terrestrial cross-border fibre links (Benin - 63.428 Gbps, Burkina Faso – 60.020 Gbps, Nigeria – 56.400 Gbps), and 8.304 Gbps was supplied by satellite. Niger Telecom’s national fibre optic backbone reached 4,000-km by 2019, with cross-border fibre links to Benin, Burkina Faso and Nigeria. Meanwhile, during 2020, ARCEP authorized Zamani to build a fibre metro network in Niamey and also a new fibre route between Niamey and Petel Kolé on the border with Burkina Faso. ARCEP... Read More →