South Sudan now has its first ever fibre broadband network. This is after Liquid Telecom announced that it will implement and operate the country's fibre network and connect it to its One Africa broadband network.

The One Africa broadband fibre network was announced a year ago by Liquid Telecom. It is now spans approximately 70,000km across 13 African countries.

“Liquid Telecom is immensely proud to bring fibre connectivity to South Sudan for the first time. This modern ICT infrastructure will help address the most pressing challenges within South Sudan, including the urgent need for peace and state building, job creation and improved livelihoods. South Sudan’s 13 million citizens will be connected to 300 million people across the East African Community. Connecting South Sudan to the ‘One Africa’ broadband network will also champion pan-Africa trade and help build Africa’s digital future,” said Strive Masiyiwa, Executive Chairman of Econet Global and Liquid Telecom.

Connecting Africa

Over the past several years Africa has seen many subsea cables being implemented on either side of its coasts. The latest one being the planned Equiano cable which is fully and privately funded by Google, running along the west coast of the continent from Portugal to South Africa. What there hasn't been a lot of, is inter country broadband connectivity.

With phase one due to be completed before the end of 2019, Liquid Telecom’s One Africa network will eventually make Internet connectivity available for nearly 13 million citizens of South Sudan, as well as thousands of businesses, government institutions and non-governmental organisations.

“The implementation of this critical fibre infrastructure is a landmark step in the delivery of affordable communications access to the people of South Sudan, the business community, government and civil society. By connecting South Sudan to the global internet, this important infrastructure development will help improve social mobility, enable economic diversification and drive inclusive private sector-led growth and productive employment. The agreement is also ideally timed, coinciding with the signing of the Revitalised Agreement on the Resolution of Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan,” said Salva Kiir Mayardit, President of South Sudan.

South Sudan will link to Liquid Telecom’s network across the region which covers the East African Community, a regional intergovernmental organisation of six partner states, the Republics of Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, United Republic of Tanzania, and Republic of Uganda.

The first phase of the agreement signed between the Government of South Sudan’s National Communication Authority and Liquid Telecom will include a 300km fibre backbone operating from the border of Uganda, through South Sudan, to Juba. Multiple metro clusters will also support the capital city. This first phase is scheduled to go live in the last quarter of 2019. The network will be expanded to other cities in subsequent phases, in time supporting the country’s 13 million citizens

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