Africa Mobile Networks (AMN) has signed a partnership with satellite telecommunications operator Intelsat to deploy 1,340 new rural base stations in Madagascar, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). This initiative aims to expand the coverage of AMN’s network of telecommunications towers, especially in rural areas, to meet the growing demand for high-speed connectivity in Africa. The combination of Intelsat’s African multi-satellite coverage and AMN’s solar tower solutions will enable communities to access the educational, social and economic benefits of telecommunications services.
AMN already signed a partnership with Starlink last July to strengthen the capacity of its telecommunications sites using Starlink’s constellation of low-orbit satellites. It also collaborates with other partners, including Gilat Satellite Networks, and uses financial support from the European Investment Bank and Meta. In November 2022, it secured a $20 million loan from Finnfund and BlueOrchard Finance to expand its network in rural sub-Saharan Africa.
This project should help reduce the digital divide by providing telecommunications services to more people in the countries concerned, where access to the Internet and mobile telephony is still limited, according to DataReportal statistics from January 2023. For example, in Rwanda, 30.5% of the population uses the Internet , and 75.9% mobile telephony. In the DRC, these figures are 22.9% and 47.9% respectively, and in Madagascar 19.7% for the Internet and 43.8% for mobile telephony.