Morocco: Maroc Telecom West Africa Submarine Cable Enters Service During 2021

Maroc Telecom has announced that it’s 8,300-km West Africa submarine cable entered service in July 2021, according to its 2021 annual registration document, connecting the operator to its subsidiaries in Cote d’Ivoire, Togo, Benin, and Gabon. The West Africa cable runs north from Casablanca (Morocco) to Lisbon (Portugal), and south from Casablanca to Libreville (Gabon) via Dakhla (Morocco), Abidjan (Cote d’Ivoire), Lome (Togo), and Cotonou (Benin). During 2021, Gabon Telecom activated its capacity on the new West Africa cable. In addition, Maroc Telecom also says that it received agreement from Mauritanian government in June 2020 for its subsidiary Mauritel to land the West Africa cable in Nouadhibou, and this spur is planned to be completed in Q4 2022. Maroc Telecom has also built a 5,300-km Trans African fibre optic cable (“le câble à fibres optiques Trans Africain”) connecting its subsidiaries in Mauritania, Mali and Burkina Faso by joining together the national backbones... Read More →

Senegal: Sonatel’s International Bandwidth Increases 53% To Reach 690 Gbps During 2021

Sonatel announced that its international Internet bandwidth reached 690 Gbps by December 2021, according to its 2021 Annual Report, a 53% increase compared to 450 Gbps in 2019 (see Senegal: Sonatel’s International Bandwidth Increases 50% To Reach 450 Gbps During 2020). The operator previously reported its international bandwidth at 300 Gbps in 2019, 175 Gbps in 2018, 80 Gbps in 2017 and 40 Gbps in 2016. Sonatel also said that it had upgraded its core fibre optic backbone capacity from 300 Gbps to 400 Gbps between Medina, Ouakam and Technopole, the southern backbone from 40 Gbps to 100 Gbops between Kaolack to Ziguinchor, and the northern backbone from 30 to 100 Gbps on the route from Dahra – Ourossogui – Saint Louis. Sonatel is now connected to the Atlantis-2, SAT-3, ACE and Main One submarine cables which land in the capital city Dakar. Three other cables under construction will also land in Dakar: the Senegal Horn of Africa Regional Express (SHARE) cable will connect Dakar with... Read More →

Central African Republic: CAR Signs Cross Border Interconnection Agreement With Cameroon

On 4 May 2022, the governments of the Central African Republic (CAR) and Cameroon signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the interconnection of electronic communication networks, which will cover the cross-border fibre optic network currently under construction between the two countries. For the time being, CAR is one of only two African countries that does not currently have an international fibre link, but construction of the national fibre backbone began in 2018 which will build links running from Bangui (the capital) to the borders of Cameroon and Congo (see Central African Republic: Construction of 1,050-Km National Fibre Backbone Commences). CAR’s Minister of Digital Economy, Posts and Telecommunications Justin Gourna Zacko said that closing date for the completion of the cross-border fibre optic link is planned to be 30 June 2022 for Cameroon, and 31 December 2022 for Central African Republic. Cameroon’s Minister of Posts and Telecommunications Minette Libom Likeng said... Read More →

Burkina Faso: Burkina Faso’s International Bandwidth Increases By 95% During 2021

Burkina Faso’s international Internet bandwidth reached 117.66 Gbps in December 2021, according to latest statistics released by ARCEP (Autorité de Régulation des Communications Électroniques et des Postes), a 95% increase compared to 60.26 Gbps in December 2020 (see Burkina Faso: Burkina Faso’s International Bandwidth Reaches 60 Gbps, December 2019). This total bandwidth of 117.66 Gbps was split between fixed-line incumbent Onatel with 50 Gbps, Orange Burkina Faso with 50.16 Gbps and PAV Burkina with 17.5 Gbps. Onatel’s international bandwidth was previously 35 Gbps in December 2020, 25.1 Gbps in 2019, 20 Gbps in 2018, 13.1 Gbps in 2017, and 10.6 Gbps in 2016. Onatel has diverse international fibre routes to neighbouring countries of Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Mauritania via Mali, and Togo. Meanwhile, Orange Burkina Faso’s international bandwidth of 50.16 in December 2021 compared with 20.16 in December 2020, 16.16 Gbps in December 2019, 16.01 Gbps in 2018, 4.19 Gbps in December... Read More →

Kenya: Kenya’s International Bandwidth Increases To 2.9 Tbps During 2021

Kenya’s utilized international Internet bandwidth reached 2,941.17 Gbps in December 2021, according to latest statistics released by the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA), a 16.6% increase compared to 2,522.35 Gbps in 2020 (see Kenya: Kenya’s Total International Bandwidth Reaches 4 Tbps By December 2020, Including 1.5 Tbps Sold To Other Countries). This total of 2,941.17 Gbps in 2021 was split between 2,938.61 Gbps supplied by submarine cable and 2.56 Gbps supplied by satellite. In its latest quarterly report, CA says that out of a total reported international bandwidth supplied by submarine cable of 4.817 Tbps in December 2021, 2,938.61 Gbps was used in Kenya, while 1,875.82 Gbps was sold to other countries. This compared to 4,008.10 Gbps in December 2020, of which 2,522.35 Gbps was used in Kenya, while 1,485.66 Gbps was sold to other countries. Source: Communications Authority of Kenya (CA)  Read More →

Africa: MTN Increases African Terrestrial Fibre Inventory To 100,000-Km, December 2021

MTN GlobalConnect (MTN GC), MTN’s wholesale and infrastructure operating company, has announced that its inventory has reached approximately 100,000-km of proprietary fibre by December 2021, compared to 85,000-km a year earlier. MTN GlobalConnect was established in 2017 to unlock value from MTN’s existing fixed network infrastructure across its operating countries, and provides wholesale and infrastructure services to other carriers, Internet Service Providers (ISPs), and other digital players. Its remit includes the capacity owned by MTN in 15 submarine cable systems, the terrestrial long distance and metropolitan fibre assets of its operating companies (OpCos). According to its annual results, MTN reported that during 2021 the operator rolled out over 15,000-km of additional terrestrial fibre optic networks across its OpCos in Africa, of which MTN GlobalConnect contributed approximately 4,400-km. MTN said that it rolled out terrestrial fibre in South Africa, Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya,... Read More →

Kenya: Kenya Pipeline Company Launches Fibre Network

On 7 April 2022, the Kenya Pipeline Company (KPC) announced the launch of a fibre optic network running from Mombasa via Nairobi (the capital) and Nakuru to Eldoret and Kisumu. KPC operates a 1,792-km network of oil pipelines in Kenya to transport refined oil and petroleum products from the port of Mombasa to storage facilities in Nairobi, Nakuru, Eldoret and Kisumu. Within this pipeline network, KPC has deployed G652 single mode fibre from Mombasa (Kipevu oil terminal) to Nairobi and from Sinendet to Kisumu, and G655E single mode fibre from Nairobi to Eldoret. According to a company brochure, there are add/drop points every 2-km along the route from Mombasa to Nairobi, and every 4-km between Nairobi and Eldoret along the cable plant. KPC has acquired a Tier-2 Network Infrastructure Licence from the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA). Other major fibre routes from Nairobi to Mombasa run along the road, railway, and electricity transmission networks of KPLC (Kenya Power and Lighting... Read More →

DRC: SOCOF Completes 650-km CAB-5 Fibre Route From Kinshasa To Muanda

On 23 August 2021, a ceremony was held to officially mark the inauguration of the fibre optic route deployed for Société Congolaise de Fibre Optique (SOCOF) from the capital city Kinshasa to the coastal town of Muanda, the landing point of the West Africa Cable System (WACS) submarine cable. The route runs from Kinshasa via Kisantu, Kimpese, Matadi, and Boma to Muanda and was deployed under the fifth phase of the World Bank’s Central African Backbone programme (CAB5). According to reports, the network from Kinshasa to Matadi is deployed along the railway right of way of the Société Congolaise des Transports et des Ports (SCTP), and from Matadi to Muanda along the Route nationale 1 (RN1) road. In December 2009, the first 650-km fibre route from Muanda to Kinshasa was completed by Société Congolaise des Postes et de Télécommunications (SCPT), providing terrestrial connectivity from the capital city to the WACS submarine cable (see DRC: OCPT Completes Fibre From Kinshasa to Muanda).... Read More →

Egypt: PEACE-MED Mediterranean Submarine Cable Section Enters Service

On 28 March 2022, PCCW Global and PEACE Cable International Network, announced the completion of the PEACE (Pakistan East Africa Cable Express) cable system’s Mediterranean segment (PEACE-MED). PEACE-MED, a part of the trunk of the PEACE cable system, is a 3,200-km submarine cable that connects Egypt (Abu Talat) to France (Marseille), with additional landing points in Cyprus and Malta. According to a company press release, PEACE-MED’s cable landings in Cyprus, Abu Talat, Marseille and Malta were all completed during the course of 2021, while stub branching units have been reserved for direct landing points to other countries thereby providing additional access options for the entire Mediterranean region. Meanwhile, on 7 March 2022, the PEACE submarine cable landed in Seychelles at Persévérance, on the north-east coast of Mahé (see Seychelles: PEACE Cable Lands In Seychelles, Due To Enter Service In May 2022). The 13,000-km PEACE cable will connect South Asia (Pakistan) and East Africa... Read More →

Rwanda: Rwanda’s International Bandwidth Reaches 155 Gbps In 2021

Rwanda reached an equipped inbound international Internet bandwidth of 155.127 Gbps in December 2021, according to latest figures published by the Rwanda Utilities and Regulatory Agency (RURA). This was a 24% increase compared to 125.510 Gbps in December 2020, 98.480 Gbps in December 2019, 54.874 Gbps in 2018, 25.370 Gbps in 2017, and 10.362 Gbps in 2016 (see Rwanda: Rwanda’s International Bandwidth Reaches 125 Gbps During 2020). Rwanda’s equipped international bandwidth was 156.190 Gbps in September 2021, 134.190 Gbps in June 2021, and 127.558 Gbps in March 2020 according to RURA. Around half of this equipped international bandwidth is actually utilized: according to RURA, Rwanda’s used international bandwidth was 80.013 Gbps in December 2021, compared to 75.313 Gbps in September 2021, 64.134 Gbps in June 2021, and 58.094 Gbps in March 2021. Source: RURA  Read More →