MALABO – Equatorial Guinea’s Ministry of Transport, Technology, Posts and Telecommunications is working to deploy advanced telecommunications services, including phone and Internet, throughout the entire country as part of the goals set forth by the government in the Horizon 2020 plan. Various projects are already underway, including the deployment of a fiber optic submarine cable between the mainland and island region, as well as the development of a backbone network for the entire nation.
“There is a network that connects all the provinces today…but we are making major investments to further develop the transmission and to improve service,” said Vicente Ehate Tomi, Equatorial Guinea’s Minister of Transport, Technology, Posts and Telecommunications. “We are also carrying out a submarine fiber optic cable project to connect the two major cities in the country, Malabo and Bata. This project has cost the state a large sum of money and will allow for a better flow of communication between the island and the mainland region.”
In addition to the fiber optic cable project, Equatorial Guinea is participating in a project supported by France Telecom and 14 African operators, known as ACE (Africa Coast to Europe), which will extend another fiber optic cable starting in France to link Europe to Africa. The project, promoted by France Telecom Orange, will feature a 17,000km cable and is expected to be operational as early as 2012. It will connect more than 23 countries.
“We are working with speed to develop and quickly implement the projects to meet the goals set forth for this Ministry by the National Economic Conference,” said Minister Ehate Tomi. “We believe we will do this much sooner than the 2020 target, even by 2015.”
Minister Ehate Tomi also pointed to other mid-sized projects that are already underway, including the dissemination of new technologies and the computerization of the country as a fundamental goal of the Horizon 2020 plan and development of Equatorial Guinea.
The Republic of Equatorial Guinea (Republica de Guinea Equatorial) is the only Spanish-speaking country in Africa, and one of the smallest nations on the continent. In the late-1990s, American companies helped discover the country’s oil and natural gas resources, which only within the last five years began contributing to the global energy supply. Equatorial Guinea is now working to serve as a pillar of stability and security in its region of West Central Africa. The country will host the 2011 Summit of the African Union.