Press Release

2Africa, the largest submarine cable system in the world, was officially launched today in Mozambique, 15th August, in the city of Nacala-Porto. A first-of-its-kind data centre was also officially opened today by project partner, Master Power Technologies.

This is the first submarine cable to land in the north of the country. It promises greater internet capacity and accelerated connectivity for Vodacom customers, supporting the growing digital economy in Mozambique.

Through this submarine fibre optic cable infrastructure, Vodacom will provide a direct international gateway for faster and more reliable internet services in the country.

The 2Africa consortium includes eight international partners: China Mobile International; Meta; Bayobab (Formerly MTN GlobalConnect); Orange; Center3; Telecom Egypt; Vodafone Group (the parent company of Vodacom); and WIOCC. These companies have partnered to build 2Africa. Launched in May 2020, the submarine cable project aims to significantly increase the capacity, quality, and availability of internet connectivity between Africa and the rest of the world.

Vodacom is the designated partner for the landing, providing infrastructure for the cable installation at existing sites in the Maputo harbour area and Nacala port.

“The landing of the 2Africa submarine cable reaffirms Vodacom’s commitment to boost digital inclusion in Mozambique and the African continent by increasing access to quality internet services and investing in network infrastructure to support this. This is an ambitious challenge for which we cannot achieve results alone. Collaboration between other industry players and the public sector is key, to enable the connection of more citizens across the continent,” revealed José Mendes, Managing Executive: Vodacom Business, Mozambique.

From this infrastructure, service providers will be able to obtain capacity on a fair and equitable basis, encouraging and supporting the development of a healthy internet services ecosystem. Direct international connectivity can then be provided to data centres, enterprises, and wholesale customers. Once the fibre optic cable system is deployed, businesses and consumers will benefit from better quality, reliability, and lower latency for Internet services, including teleworking, high-definition video streaming, as well as advanced multimedia and mobile video applications.

The landing of the fibre optic cable system also offers potential for much-needed regional job creation in sectors that rely on direct international connectivity, such as data centres, call centres and software development. This employment opportunity can help contribute to local and national socio-economic development.

The 2Africa project supports further growth of 4G, 5G and fixed broadband access, providing better connectivity to underserved and rural areas as well as network resilience. As a gateway to international connectivity, the fibre optic cable landing will help develop telecoms networks in every province.

Submarine cable systems that provide international networks between continents and countries are an integral part of the connectivity value chain and increase the internet’s ability to meet the current and future demands of Africa’s growing digitalisation, while catalysing economic growth. An RTIstudy indicated that the 2Africa cable is expected to stimulate an economic impact of US$26.2-36.9 billion, equivalent to 0.42-0.58% of Africa’s GDP, within two to three years of its commissioning.

Alcatel Submarine Networks is responsible for the manufacture and installation of the 2Africa cable, which is scheduled for completion in 2024. The cable system is 45,000 kilometres long and with a design capacity of 180 Terabits per second. It will connect Europe (to the east via Egypt), the Middle East (via Saudi Arabia) and Africa. Essentially, the 2Africa project will connect 19 countries in Africa and 33 in total.

The submarine fibre optic cable system enables more communities to access transformative online resources, from education and healthcare to jobs and financial services, and to experience the economic and social benefits of seamless connectivity.

Is 2Africa a game-changer for the African continent? Join the operators in discussion at the world’s largest submarine cable networks event, Submarine Networks EMEA 2024

Also in the news:
Cisco to buy-out Telenor from Working Group Two JV
Poland’s ‘largest ever’ broadband subsidy draws 300 applications
Italian government signs MoU to take minority stake in TIM’s NetCo