List of terrestrial fibre optic cable projects in Africa

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This is a list of terrestrial fibre optic cable projects in Africa. While submarine communications cables are used to connect countries and continents to the Internet, terrestrial fibre optic cables are used to extend this connectivity to landlocked countries or to urban centers within a country that has submarine cable access. In most of the world, a large number of such cables exist, often amounting to robust Internet backbones. The lack of such high-speed cables poses a great problem for most African countries. The construction of both submarine cables and their terrestrial extensions is thus considered an important step to economic growth and development to many African countries.



Operator Map KML Summary
Algeria Telecom map Algeria Telecom completes its part of the Algeria to Nigeria optical network.[1]


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Angola Telecom map kml
Zap Fibra


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Benin Telecoms map
Phase3 See entry for Phase3 Nigeria
Suburban Telecoms See entry for Suburban Telecom Nigeria


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Botswana Fibre Network (BOFINET) map kml A government funded national fibre network in Botswana covering more than 2000 km. Completed in 2008.[2]
Mascom Mascom has announced plans to build a fibre network.[when?][3]

Burkina Faso[edit]

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Burundi Backbone Service Burundi has launched an ICT backbone.[4]
Viettel Burundi
ONATEL Burundi Website content offline as of 5/24/2018


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MTN Cameroon map From this 2009 article. Needs updating.
Camtel map kml Camtel have completed 5000 km of the 6000 km of fibre laid as part of the Central African Backbone initiative.[5]


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SotelTchad or perhaps SITCOM-Tchad? map Chad has a 700 km national fibre backbone which from N'Djamena south which is now connected to SAT3 via Camtel.[6]

Cote d'Ivoire[edit]

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Gouvernement du Côte d'Ivoire Huawei are building a 6,700 km national fibre network on behalf of the government.[7]
Cote d'Ivoire Telecom
Orange Cote d'Ivoire
MTN Cote d'Ivoire

Democratic Republic of Congo[edit]

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Liquid Telecom map Liquid Telecom have extended their southern African fibre network as far as Lumumbashi in the Democratic Republic of Congo.[8]


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Djibouti Telecom


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Ethio Telecom (formerly ETC) map kml


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Expresso Telecom Ghana
MTN Ghana map KML
National Communications Backbone Company (NCBC) Ltd map NCBC is a subsidiary of Vodafone Ghana.


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Access Kenya map
National Optical Fibre Backbone Infrastructure (NOFBI) map
Kenya Data Networks map kml
Telkom Kenya
Jamii Telecom map
Kenya Power (formerly KPLC)
Airtel Kenya


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Telecom Malagasy (Telma) map KML


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Malawi Telecommunications Ltd (MTL) MTL appears to have completed its domestic fibre optic network in early 2012.[9]
Electricity Supply Corporation Of Malawi (ESCOM) Undated powerpoint presentation on Escom's network


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Orange Mali map KML
Sotelma / Malitel map
Gouvernement du Mali The Malian government has announced a 942 km fibre optic cable project which will link Bamako-Gao-Kidal-Tin-Zaoutière to the Algerian border and Gap-Ansongo-Labezanga to the border of Niger. This project is funded by a 45 million dollar loan from the Export-Import Bank of China.[10]


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Mauritel map kml In May 2011 Mauritel launched a fiber optic cable project linking the towns of Nouakchott and Kobonni.[11]


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Maroc Telecom KML 60% of regional fibre network complete in 2010[12]


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Telecomunicações de Moçambique (TDM) map kml


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Telecom Namibia Ltd map kml
Paratus Africa Various fiber projects deployed since 2011. Full FTTx deployment in various towns. Cross-country backhaul fiber from WACS (West Africa Cable Landing Station) through Namibia connecting various land-locked countries around Namibia.


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Sonitel map kml


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Glo map1 map2
Phase3 Telecoms map kml Phase3 are building the West Africa One network, which is an aerial optic fibre transmission system which will run from Nigeria to Benin and Togo, possibly beyond.[13]
Suburban Telecoms
21st Century
MTN Nigeria
Multi-Links map Multi-Links has a terrestrial fibre optic network spanning 8,232 km in Nigeria.[14]


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MTN Rwanda
Rwanda Development Board map The physical deployment of the RDB's network was completed in January 2011.[15]


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Sonatel map kml


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Somcable kml Licensed with 25 years of exclusivity for Metro and Backbone fiber optic infrastructure building
Hortel Hortel announces link to Liquid Telecom[16]

South Africa[edit]

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Telkom map Telkom is the dominant operator and has the largest fibre network in South Africa, covering approximately 143,000 km as per the 2011 annual report.[17]
Broadband Infraco map Broadband Infraco is a South African State Owned Entity (SOE) that is intended to participate in those segments of the telecommunications market and value chain that impede private sector development and innovation in telecoms services and content offerings. Broadband Infraco maintains a national long distance fibre optic network, providing high capacity telecommunication services between all major national metropolitan centres and being expanded to enable connectivity to reach smaller cities and rural areas.[18]
Neotel map
Dark Fibre Africa (DFA) map kml Community Investment Ventures (CIV) and Venfin are the principal shareholders in DFA. ABSA Capital, who are a stakeholder in CIV via New GX Capital Holdings, also backs CIV. Shareholders in Dark Fibre Africa have granted the necessary approvals to adequately capitalize the company for the construction of a nationwide Dark Fibre Infrastructure. This funding will exceed R2Bn by 2013.[19]
Fibreco map KML Established in 2009 as an equal partnership between CellC, Internet Solutions and Convergence Partners.[20]
NLD Consortium A consortium made up of Neotel, MTN, and Vodacom are deploying a national fibre network in South Africa.[21]
BWired Announced in August 2011, BWired plans to invest USD600 million in regional fibre infrastructure.[22]
Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) PRASA announces plans to lease excess fibre capacity.[23]


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Sudatel map kml


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National Information & Communication Technology Broadband Backbone (NICTBB) map and map kml Funded by a soft loan from the Chinese government, the NICTBB is being built by the Tanzanian government and will be operated by the Tanzanian Telecommunications Company (TTCL)[24]
CTV Fiber to the building, mainly in Dar es Salaam
Consortium A consortium of TIGO, Zantel, Vodacom and Airtel
SimbaNET Metro fiber - Dar es Salaam
Raha / Liquid Telecom map Metro fiber - Dar es Salaam


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Togo Telecom map


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Ministry of ICTs and National Information Technology Authority map KML
Uganda Telecom


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Zambia Telecommunications map
ZESCO map kml
Copperbelt Energy Corporation (CEC)


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Liquid Telecoms map kml
Powertel map


This list was initially developed as part of AfTerFibre,[25] a project to map terrestrial fibre optic cable projects in Africa. The project is sponsored by Google Africa and, on completion, will be hosted by the UbuntuNet Alliance. All information gathered by the project will be publicly available under an open license.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Algeria completed its Algiers-Abuja optical fiber link section". Algeria News. 2 May 2011. Retrieved 9 September 2011.
  2. ^ "Trans-Kalahari Fibre Optic Project Complete". Botswana Gazette. 1 October 2008. Retrieved 12 August 2011.
  3. ^ Mogende, Modiri (17 October 2013). "Another fibre optic cable to rival BOFINET". Botswana Gazette. Retrieved 31 October 2013.
  4. ^ "Burundi launches ICT backbone". 20 May 2016.
  5. ^ "Cameroon Assesses CAB Project". Balancing Act / Cameroon Tribune. 12 August 2011. Retrieved 9 September 2011.
  6. ^ "Camtel will install the Chadian fibre optic network". Business in Cameroon. 20 March 2012. Retrieved 12 March 2013.
  7. ^ Knutsen, Elise (20 July 2013). "Ivory Coast fibre optic network to boost growth - minister". Reuters. Retrieved 25 July 2013.
  8. ^ "Liquid Telecom Lays Fibre To The DRC And Connects DRC Mobile Operator To Southern African Regional Fibre Network And To WACS". Liquid Telecom Press Release. 13 November 2012. Retrieved 7 February 2013.
  9. ^ "MTL's USD55m project successful". Biztech Africa. 21 January 2012. Retrieved 24 September 2013.
  10. ^ Addamah, Steven (5 July 2011). "Mali : Dans l'optique de la fibre optique". Le Griot. Retrieved 12 August 2011.
  11. ^ "Launch of fiber-optic cable project in Mauritania". The Infrastructure Consortium for Africa. Retrieved 12 August 2011.
  12. ^ "Maroc Telecom's first phase of regional fibre backbone 60% complete". Telegeography. 26 Feb 2010. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
  13. ^ Oketola, Dayo (12 Jul 2011). "Phase3 Telecom, French firm in network expansion pact". Punch. Retrieved 8 September 2011.
  14. ^ Zuor Jr., Ben (3 January 2012). "Multi-links introduces lowest tariff with free calls". Business Day. Retrieved 23 January 2012.
  15. ^ "Rwanda: Fibre Optic Cable Rollout Complete". 6 January 2011. Retrieved 12 August 2011.
  16. ^ "Somalia get first cross border fibre optic link". Hortel Hormuud Telecom Somalia. Hortel. Retrieved 14 November 2013.
  17. ^ "Telkom aims to improve perceptions". Business Report. 8 April 2011. Retrieved 29 October 2011.
  18. ^ "Broadband Infraco Annual Report 2011" (PDF). Broadband Infraco. Retrieved 29 October 2011.
  19. ^ "About Dark Fibre Africa". Retrieved 29 October 2011.
  20. ^ "FibreCo Project Update - 20 April 2011" (PDF). Retrieved 29 October 2011.
  21. ^ Staff Writer (2 July 2012). "First phase of MTN national fibre network live". MyBroadband. Retrieved 18 July 2012.
  22. ^ "New telecoms player to invest billions in fibre". TechCentral. 2011-08-10. Retrieved 12 August 2011.
  23. ^ Nyambura-Mwaura, Helen (30 October 2013). "South Africa's PRASA to lease excess fibre optic capacity". Reuters. Retrieved 31 October 2013.
  24. ^ Mutarubukwa, Al-Amani (27 May 2010). "Tanzania: First Phase of ICT Broadband Backbone is Activated Nationwide". Retrieved 12 August 2011.
  25. ^ Song, Steve (2011-06-29). "AfTerFibre - Mapping Terrestrial Fibre Optic Cable Project in Africa". Retrieved 12 August 2011.

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