Liquid Telecom expands Kenya fibre-optic network

Mwangi Mumero Liquid Telecom expands Kenya fibre-optic networkLiquid Telecom has announced it will invest US$400,000 to connect Kenya’s Kilifi County to the Internet

The move will see 11 ministries in the county, which is located on Kenya’s coast, connected to a 10km-wide area network through fibre-optics, with two ministries connected via microwave and four other sites linked through the very small aperture terminal (VSAT).

The project is part of a larger US$50mn scheme by the company to expand its broadband network, connecting 40 of Kenya’s 47 counties to the internet.

“We seek to facilitate the opening up of the county to new businesses and enable Kenyans in Kilifi to access government services enjoyed by residents of other cities,” said Paul Statham, Liquid Telecom’s chief commercial officer (CCO).

Statham added that the new internet connectivity will play an important role in the economic prospects of the region, with financial institutions and a number of colleges and universities set to see particular benefits.

Last year, the company invested US$2mn in a fibre-optic project in Siaya County, on the shore of Lake Victoria, in the first operation of its kind focussing on rural Kenya.

Using the wide area network (WAN) concept, the network linked to the county headquarters, sub-counties and wards to the central government.

“We are on course to having all counties in Kenya connected. In this way, investment and development will no longer be confined to the cities but will be felt across the whole country,” said Statham.

Data from the Communications Authority of Kenya (CAK) indicates that Internet penetration in the country stands at 52.3 per cent; the highest in the East African region.

The CAK also indicated that overall internet use for the year 2013-2014 had grown by 13 per cent to reach 13.1mn from the previous 11.9mn. 

Mwangi Mumero

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