AU Launches Internet Exchange Point in Mauritius: “Keeping intra-country internet traffic within the country”
PORT-LOUIS, Mauritius, August 31, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The African Union Commission (AUC), through the Infrastructure and Energy Department, in collaboration with the Ministry of Technology, Communication and Innovation today officially operationalized the Internet Exchange Point in Mauritius.
After the launch H.E. Dr. Elham Ibrahim, African Union Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy, paid a courtesy call to H.E. Bibi Ameenah Firdaus Gurib-Fakim, President of the Republic of Mauritius.
H.E. Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy congratulated H.E. President of Mauritius on her recent appointment that happened during the AU year for women for empowerment. She further briefed the President on the AU Agenda 2063, the Program for Infrastructure Development in Africa and the African Internet Exchange System Project.
Through the African Internet Exchange System (AXIS) project, the African Union Commission has extended capacity building support to facilitate the establishment of internet exchange points in 30 Member States including Mauritius.
Following the capacity building support, the following twelve Member States have since set up their Internet Exchange Points (IXPs): Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Congo Republic, Cote D’Ivoire, Gabon, Gambia, Liberia, Mauritius, Namibia, Seychelles and Swaziland.
“The Government of Mauritius has adopted Vision 2030 as the country’s economic blue print and the ICT sector is expected to drive the economy. I therefore wish to thank the African Union Commission for supporting the operationalization of the Mauritius Internet Exchange Point, said Mr. Jugdish .D. Phokeer, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Technology, Communication and Innovation.”
An Internet Exchange Point (IXP) is a neutral physical infrastructure whose purpose is to facilitate the exchange of Internet traffic between different Internet Service Providers (ISPs) within a given territory, thereby keeping local Internet traffic local to that territory
“Africa is currently paying overseas carriers to exchange intra- continental traffic on our behalf. This is both costly as well as an inefficient way of handling exchange of local Internet traffic. I look forward to the advancement of the internet exchange point in Mauritius to be able to put its potential at the service of citizens in Mauritius and Africa.” Said H.E. AU Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy.”
A recent impact assessment on the African Union supported internet exchange point in Namibia indicated an estimated cost saving of USD 1.8 Million and reduction of latency from 300ms to 2ms. For the Serekunda internet exchange point in Gambia, an estimated cost saving of USD 100,000 and reduction of latency from 100ms to 2ms.
The launch was officiated by Mr. Jugdish .D. Phokeer, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Technology, Communication and Innovation and H.E. Dr. Elham Ibrahim, African Union Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy and attended by Senior Ministry Officials, and Leaders of the Industry.