The ACE submarine cable system is a medium for telecommunications which has higher capacity compared to Gambia’s current infrastructure.
Lamin Camara, Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Information and Communications Infrastructure, described the process that led to Gambia’s selection as host country.
"The ACE consortium, which is led by France Telecom-Orange, is made up of 16 members from Africa and Europe. The Gambia was chosen to host the launching after many competitions. We have a grant from World Bank that has facilitated for our membership", he said.
Around US$25 million was contributed to the project, with the private sector contributing 51 percent while the remaining 49 percent was donated by the government with a grant from the World Bank.
The Director of International Operations at GAMTEL, Gambia’s national telecoms company, Malang A Bass described what the launching means for companies operating in the country.
"We were getting our source at SONATEL in Senegal but with the launching of the (ACE) submarine cable system, we will get it directly from the main source because we have the ownership,” Bass said.
The cable will support voice and data communications. It will also increase the speed of the Internet because Gambians will be able to access broadband optic fibre currently enjoyed in developed countries. Local and international calls will become cheaper and clearer.
"Whether you are rich or poor you will have the accessibility and affordability," he added.