LION (cable system)

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Lower Indian Ocean Network (LION)
Landing points
Total length1000 km
Design capacity1.28 terabits per second
Date of first use2009

Lower Indian Ocean Network (LION) is a submarine communications cable network that connects Madagascar, Réunion, and Mauritius.[1]


In March 2008, announced the construction of a new submarine cable to connect the Southeast African islands.[2] The project was financed by a consortium made up of Orange Madagascar, Mauritius Telecom and France Telecom S.A.. Overall, the LION project cost an estimated 37 million dollars. The Mauritius Telecom group has reportedly invested 10.8 million in the project.[1] The LION I network was inaugurated in March 2010. This cable digitized the region, and paved the way for the development of an outsourcing economy (call centers).[3]

LION II, linking Madagascar, Mayotte and Kenya, was launched in April 2012. In July 2017, Orange announced the construction of FLY-LION III, a 400km extension of LION I and II. The capacity of this new cable should be 4 terabits/s.[4]

In July 2018, the website ranked Madagascar 22nd in the list of countries with the fastest connections.[5]

On 5-6 October 2018, the LION II cable broke, leading to a severe decrease of digital access in Mayotte the following days. While Emtel had to play the diplomacy with its users, Mauritius Telecom, thanks to its global participation in the LION consortium, was able to re-route on other LION cables for balance-loading.[6]


The LION is 1,000 kilometres long and delivers up to 1.28 terabits per second.[1] To reach Europe and other destinations, the LION cable is linked to the SAFE cable and will be connected to the EASSy and the East African Marine System (TEAMs) cable when they are operational.

It has cable landing points at:[7][8]

The LION II submarine cable network (2700 km), which required a 57 million euro investment, connects the LION I network to Mayotte and Mombasa, Kenya.[9] The LION II network enables a shorter cable distance to the Middle East and Europe, thus shortening latence between servers.[6]


  1. ^ a b c "Orange inaugurates the new submarine cable LION in Reunion and continues its strategy to develop broadband internet in the Indian Ocean" (PDF) (Press release). Orange. 2009-12-11. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-08-20. Retrieved 2010-08-02.
  2. ^ Vincent Groizeleau (27 March 2008). "France Télécom va poser un câble entre La Réunion et Madagascar". (in French). Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  3. ^ Patrick Hilbert (31 March 2010). "LION Cable Links Madagascar, Mauritius, Reunion". Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  4. ^ "Orange : Un accord pour un nouveau câble sous-marin très haut débit". (in French). 13 July 2017. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  5. ^ "Madagascar: Africa number 1 country in terms of broadband speed". 18 July 2018. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  6. ^ a b Florian Lepoigneur (6 October 2018). "Rupture du câble LION 2: des perturbations Internet pour encore quelques jours". (in French). Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  7. ^ "LION optical fiber submarine cable system". Archived from the original on 2012-07-09. Retrieved 2010-08-02.
  8. ^ LION Greg's Cable Map
  9. ^ "Lion II". (in French). Retrieved 13 December 2018.

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