Lack of high-speed international connectivity is a major constraint to the delivery of broadband services in Africa. The Central Africa ICT Backbone (CAB) project was designed to develop hi-speed telecommunications backbone infrastructure to provide the region with digital broadband access, through a network of terrestrial fibre connections linked to an underwater optical fibre cable system along the African Western Coast. It will link several Central African countries – Cameroun, Chad and Central African Republic – and provide the region with digital broadband access to the global fibre network, dramatically advancing communication services.
In 2008, IPPF contributed $588,000 to engage experts to study the viability and facilitate investment in CAB, which involves laying some 2,200 km of fibre optic cables, and leveraging 1,000 km of existing oil pipeline infrastructure between Kribi (Cameroun) and Doba (Chad).
Financing of $113.4 million was mobilized, starting with the AfDB, and construction is underway
Once completed, it will expand access to high-speed internet in Central Africa by increasing availability and lowering costs and improve the availability of training and ICT access in institutions of higher education.