In brief

14 September 2018

Internet

The Federal Government of Nigeria has obtained a credit of USD328 million from the China Exim Bank for the deployment of the NIPTI 2 national backbone network, Agence Ecofin writes. The funding will be provided to state-owned company Galaxy Backbone, which inked a collaboration agreement for the rollout with Huawei Technologies. The fibre-optic deployment, scheduled to be completed in 2019, will complement the NIPTI 1 programme – which covers most of the southern states – by extending the network nationwide. The Minister of Communications Adebayo Shittu said in May: ‘When concluded, it will not only cover federal ministries, department agencies and all government’s parastatals, but there will be enough for commercialisation to the private sector, particularly GSM companies and other ICT industries. So, we hope that Nigeria will be making a lot of money from this particular facility when completed.’

South Africa-based private equity firm Harith General Partners has acquired a majority stake in Malawian fibre-optic cable operator Open Connect Limited (OCL), Bloomberg reports. OCL was created in March 2016 as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Malawi Telecommunications Limited (MTL) to manage, develop and maintain the country’s 2,250km national fibre backbone network. Harith’s other fibre investments in Africa include a roughly 30% stake in Dark Fibre Africa (DFA) and a data centre company in Nigeria.