WACS launch date announced

WACS launch date announced

The WACS cable system, which links Southern Africa, West Africa and Europe is due to go live on May 11, according to the cable’s management committee.

WACS is 14,500km in length and will utilise a 4 fibre pair 128 wavelength system, with a design capacity of 5.12 Tbps.

The cable will have landings in Namibia, Angola, the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Republic of Congo, Cameroon, Nigeria, Togo, Ghana, Cote d'Ivoire, Cape Verde, the Canary Islands, Portugal and the UK with a PoP in London. It claims to be the first cable to land in Namibia, Togo, the Republic of Congo and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Investors for the $650 million project include Angola Cables, Broadband Infraco, Cable&Wireless Worldwide, Cabo Verde Telecom, Congo Telecom, MTN Group, Portugal Telecom, SCPT, Tata Communications, Telecom Namibia, Telkom South Africa, Togo Telecom, Vodacom Group and Vodafone Spain.

WACS will compete with the three existing cables on Africa’s West coast, Main One, Glo-1 and SAT-3 as well as the France Telecom led ACE cable which is due to go live later this year.

“Effectively, WACS will create a more competitive environment. It will allow smaller operators in the larger markets of Nigeria, Ivory Coast and Ghana to acquire capacity from WACS, rather than from the larger operators,” said Dobek Pater, senior analyst at consulting group Africa Analysis.

For more information about ACE and WACS be sure to read our Africa’s West Side Story feature.

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