Yet Another Planned African Undersea Cable (YAPAUC). As 2008 draws to a close, I can’t help but reflect in amazement at the rash of announcements in the last year of planned undersea fibre-optic cables around the African continent. If only half of them come to fruition, it will bring vast changes to the connectivity scene on the continent. Given the current credit climate, I wager that about half of the cables is probably a fair estimate.
However, the credit crunch hasn’t stopped France Telecom-Orange and its subsidiaries in Africa from announcing a new West African cable, Africa Coast to Europe (ACE) that will stretch from France to Gabon.
Their strategy is to offer access to over 20 countries in the West African region most of whom will not be connected by other planned cable initiatives such as MaIN One or Glo-1 until a second phase of deployment. Countries covered by the ACE cable will include Gabon, Cameroon, Nigeria, Benin, Togo, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Senegal, Gambia, Cape Verde, Mauritania, Morocco, Spain, Portugal and France.
The cable is planned to go live in 2011. I have updated the African Undersea Cables page accordingly. To date, the planned capacity of the cable does not appear to have been published.