A 22km interconnected fibre optic network linking Cameroon and Gabon is now officially launched and operational.
Because of the new network it will no longer be necessary to manage links through international submarine cables rather than using more direct communications methods. This will reduce costs.
Launched late last week in Meyo-Kye, Gabon, by senior telecommunications ministers from both countries, the new link means that the backbone networks of each country are now connected via Kye-Ossi in Cameroon and Bitam in Gabon. Kye-Ossi is a commune in the South Province of Cameroon located on Cameroon’s borders with Gabon and Equatorial Guinea. Bitam is a town in northern Gabon on the border with Cameroon.
According to the website ITWeb Africa, the infrastructure being deployed consists of a 96-strand G652 type fibre optic network laid underground, with a joint box located on the River Ntem Bridge, which separates both countries.
The interconnection has been tested and availability of service rate stands at nearly 100 percent in accordance with ITU standards, according to Ngongeh Ayafor Clement, technical director at Cameroon Telecommunications (Camtel). He also said that precautions have also been taken to prevent vandalism.
The latest interconnection offers a capacity of approximately 100 Tbps, high enough, according to reports, to manage e-learning, videoconferencing, e-commerce, telework, telemedicine, file transfer and other relatively high-data-rate applications,
This development stems from an MoU signed on 28 November 2019 in Libreville between Gabon and Cameroon and forms part of the broader Central African Backbone (CAB) project.
CAB is a fibre optic internet backbone being developed to connect the countries of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) in Africa via high-speed internet. The countries included in the CAB project are Cameroon, the Central African Republic, Chad, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, the Republic of Congo and São Tomé and Príncipe. CAB is split up into five phases of which four are now reportedly complete.