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Wednesday, Oct 16th

Zimbabwe announces US$25-m fibre project

Zimbabwe announces US-m fibre project.

Zimbabwe's fixed line operator TelOne has partnered with China's Wuhan FibreHome Technologies in a high speed fibre connectivity project with the aim to connect 100 000 homes at a cost of US$25-million.

FibreHome Technologies operates as a product manufacturer and solution provider in the field of information technology and telecommunications.

The project will be rolled out in phases, beginning with Harare and moving on to Bulawayo and then Mutate.

The initial phase, currently underway, will connect 10 000 households by year-end, with the objective to reach  50 000 homes.

Zimbabwe's minister of ICT, Minister Supa Mandiwanzira said, "The project of connecting over 50 000 homes is in progress. Harare and other homes and surroundings will be connected by the end of the year."

The second phase will connect another 10 000, but it is envisaged that about 100 000 homes will eventually be covered across the country by 2018.

TelOne is targeting rural and newly resettled farming areas, that had been neglected for some time, said TelOne managing director, Chipo Mutasa.

Mutasa said her company will not be outsourcing on the project: "We have the capacity and the technical expertise as TelOne, we do not need to outsource any service here, we have it all and can do it."

The project is in line with SADC's vision of 85% internet penetration in the region by 2020, said Minister Mandiwanzira. "The Zimbabwe government has mandated TelOne to play leading roles in meeting our penetration target. Everyone should have access to internet in Zimbabwe, this is the highway to social development."

Notwithstanding liquidity challenges, the country is targeting 100% internet penetration by that period.

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