Tanzania’s NICTBB drives down wholesale Internet prices

Tanzania’s citizens are soon going to enjoy better and cheaper Internet after the National Information Communications Technology Broadband Backbone infrastructure (NICTBB) brought down the national Internet backbone prices for the second time in less than five months.

This comes after the NICTBB announced that it had completed connecting Tanzania’s fibre to all of its neighbouring countries, something that will increase the network availability to up to 99.8 percent, according to Peter Nogota, Head of NICTBB.

“We have also reviewed down the IRU tariff structure by 33% for 10,15 and 20 Years to stimulate the uptake of the capacity services to expand operators’ business horizons at less investment cost,

“Hence make affordable costs for end users across the country and beyond the national boundaries and contribute significantly towards accelerating socio-economic development in Tanzania and to the neighboring countries,” Nogota said.

With the second phase of the interconnection plans complete, Tanzania will have a better connectivity than Kenya, which is yet to connect its fibre backbone to all its neighbours, particularly with Southern Sudan and Egypt.

NICTBB reported that the completion of the project would bring down the cost of Broadband with the highest drop ever recorded in the last 10 to 15 years. The ISP’s connecting through this backbone will also have 5 percent drop in capacity charges, and 5 percent drop in Operations and Maintenance costs.

Earlier this year, Optic fibre cuts in Kenya saw the region’s connection vastly affected, as most of its connections are through its coastal town of Mombasa. Kenya’s neighbour, Uganda, was seriously affected with these cuts, something that saw them opt for a second fibre connection option through Tanzania in a bid to guard itself from further interruptions.

NICTBB was formed by the Tanzanian government to spearhead the country’s quest for a national fibre optic grid, and connections to all of its neighbours. The 5,300km long NICTBB is being constructed by the International Telecommunication Construction Corporation (CITCC) of China at the cost of TZS238 billion (USD152 million) financed by a soft loan provided by Chinese Exim Bank.

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