China loan to fund Sierra Leone’s ACE link

sierra sxcSierra Leone has entered into a US$15mn loan agreement with China to help fund its link up with the Africa Coast to Europe (ACE) cable system

According to a Concord Times report, the bilateral and development cooperation between the two countries will give a major boost to telecommunications in Sierra Leone.

Xu Zhou, head of political affairs at the Chinese Embassy in Sierra Leone, told Concord Times that the Chinese government has approved the loan and the project would be implemented by ICT solutions provider Huawei.

“With the signing of this agreement, the Chinese government has approved the amount of US$15mn and the project would be implemented by a Chinese company Huawei. It was just a simple signing agreement without too many details,” Zu said.

The report detailed the launch of the 17,000km ACE cable by France Telecom, a system that would run from France to South Africa, connecting 23 countries with an aim to enhance broadband access.

According to the report, Sierra Leone had received a credit of US$31mn from the World Bank earlier to connect to its first fibre optic network.

Last year, the international body had also approved a total of US$71.5mn for broadband development throughout the continent. 

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