PARIS: Telecoms and internet giants unveiled on Thursday a mammoth project to lay a subsea cable around Africa to boost internet access to the underserved continent.

The consortium, which includes China Mobile International, Facebook, Orange and Vodafone, said a cable 37,000 kilometres long will make landfall in 16 countries in Africa and the Middle East.

“The system is expected to go live in 2023/4, delivering more than the total combined capacity of all subsea cables serving Africa today,” said the group, which includes regional operators.

The cable will be one of the longest in the world, providing the continent with new high-speed links to Europe and the Middle East.

The connector will travel down the east coast of Africa and then up the west coast and connect to Britain, using new technology that doubles the number of optical fibres. Published in Dawn, May 15th, 2020