Connectivity and datacentre solutions operator MainOne has secured a license to expand national and international connectivity services in Cote d'Ivoire, with the construction of a fourth cable to improve the international connectivity of the country.
The C1B license, received from Minister Bruno Koné, the country's Minister for Communication, Digital Economy and Postal Services, will enable MainOne land its trans-Atlantic submarine cable and build transmission infrastructure in Cote d'Ivoire.
The impact of this will be to strengthen connectivity, reduce international capacity costs and support wholesale customers, major operators and internet service providers (ISPs). It signals further expansion across West Africa for MainOne, which already has a presence in ten countries in the region and operates a 100G international submarine cable system.
"We have just taken an important step through this authorisation for the improvement of the telecommunication infrastructure of our country, specifically the improvement of international connectivity. MainOne cable will have an impact on price and quality and will strengthen the security of our infrastructure," said Minister Koné.
The country's authorities believe the entry of MainOne will further democratise the international bandwidth market in Cote d'Ivoire and neighbouring countries, and drive down bandwidth costs.
"Cote d'Ivoire is the largest economy in the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) and a very important hub for business and transport in West Africa," said Funke Opeke, CEO of MainOne.
"The dynamism of the national economy and accelerated development of the digital economy in Cote d'Ivoire as well as its regional leadership makes it a natural hub for the West African region and guided MainOne's decision to invest in Cote d'Ivoire."
As part of an overarching plan to invest close to US$20m in the country with a focus on the provision of wholesale connectivity services, MainOne will commence the construction of its digital transmission cable in June. It is expected to be concluded in the second half of 2019.
The cable landing will provide open-access infrastructure within Cote d'Ivoire and other WAEMU countries to expand internet access for all users in the region and support rapid development as well as facilitate increased non-resources trade and improve public services to aid the evolution of regional businesses.
"By investing and encouraging the business ecosystem within West Africa, we hope to bring meaningful technology solutions to businesses, to enable them in their quest for improved productivity and efficiency through dedicated and reliable connectivity services. We are prepared to collaborate with incumbent operators towards enhancing regional integration and global access," said Opeke.