Google’s Equiano subsea cable has come ashore at Swakopmund in Namibia.
In February 2021, Paratus Group and Telecom Namibia were selected to build the cable landing station (CLS) for the Equiano subsea internet cable in the region.
In early February 2022, Paratus Namibia confirmed that the cable landing station at Swakopmund for the Equiano subsea cable was complete and operational.
According to the network operator, the landing station was completed in June last year. The internal fit, which includes power, cabling cabinets, conduits, raceways, cages, and security – was completed in January 2022.
In a statement released by the companies, the Equiano subsea cable will provide communications diversity due to its increased capacity, “and this will directly impact connectivity with faster internet speeds, more flexibility in the market and an improved user experience for consumers in Namibia and other regions.”
“Once Equiano becomes fully operational in quarter four this year, it is expected to deliver up to 20 times more capacity than was previously available in the country”, the statement read.
A recent economic impact assessment conducted by Africa Practice together with Genesis Analytics and commissioned by Google reveals that Equiano’s arrival in Namibia will increase internet speeds by more than 2.5 times; increase internet penetration by 7.5 per cent in the next three years; and act as a catalyst for significant growth, job creation and sustainability.
Managing Director of Google Sub-Saharan Africa, Nitin Gajria, said, “Google is committed to supporting Africa’s digital transformation, and we are delighted to see the impact of Equiano’s landing in Namibia. We’ve worked with experts to guarantee Equiano’s greatest potential effect in Namibia and Africa.”
CEO of Paratus Group, Barney Harmse, said, “Namibia has higher internet connection levels – at 40.5 per cent compared with an average of 29 per cent for sub-Saharan African countries – but has relied upon the West Africa Cable System (WACS) for its international connectivity until now. The landing of the Equiano cable will notably increase Namibia’s global bandwidth capacity as it is four times greater than WACS. This will ensure not only better stability of connectivity in the country but also lower latency and higher speeds in the global transmission of data.
Dr Stanley Shanapinda, Telecom Namibia CEO, said, “The Google Equiano Cable shore landing is a significant step in developing our national telecommunications infrastructure. Equiano Cable will become a critical element in meeting the country’s current and future international connectivity demands, as the cable incorporates new technology that enables over 20 times more network capacity than the existing WACS cable.”