Tanzania to route national fibre extension along electricity

Tanzania to route national fibre extension along electricity grid

10 September 2021 | Alan Burkitt-Gray

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The government of Tanzania is to use the country’s national electricity grid to extend its nationwide fibre network.

The Ministry of Information and Communication Technologies has awarded Tanzania Telecommunications Corporation a contract to construct the network over the power infrastructure – and to extend the power network itself.

Faustine Ndugulile (pictured), the minister of information and communication technologies, said high speed internet was essential for the next industrial revolution.

“The fourth industrial revolution is built on a combination of various digital and modern technologies such as blockchain, drones, internet, artificial intelligence and more,” he said. “To be able to effectively use all these technologies, we need reliable communication and power supply.”

Tanzania is funding the expansion with the help of a US150 million loan from the World Bank, announced in May 2021.

The government aims to improve broadband connections for more than 75% of the country’s population of 58 million.

Ndugulile said he wanted every household that is connected to electricity to also have access to the internet.

This investment in fibre is part of the Digital Tanzania Project, which also aims to connect 425 ministries, departments and public agencies.

By the end of the year, the national fibre infrastructure should be extended by 4,450 km, more than double the 1,880 km planned for the financial year 2021-22.