Twenty-six cities in Gabon will be connected to the Central Africa Backbone (CAB) fibre optic network via an interlink at Libreville.
According to the country’s minister of state for the digital economy, Edgard Anicet Mboumbou-Miyakou, the first phase of the project is nearing completion and involves collaboration between the World Bank, the National Agency for Digital Infrastructure and Frequencies in Gabon, and the National Commission for Public Interest Works for the Promotion of Entrepreneurship and Employment (TIPPEE).
The project falls under the fourth component (CAB4) of the broader CAB and involves the deployment of nearly 2,000 km of fibre optic infrastructure to connect the provinces of the Estuary, Moyen-Ogooué, Ogooué-Ivindo, Ogooué-Lolo and Haut-Ogooué to the capital Libreville.
A major component of the project is the construction of a national datacentre that will provide local data hosting and data storage services.
One unit of the datacentre is located in the commune of Franceville (Haut-Ogooué province), while the other located in the Economic Zone of Nkok (commune of Ntoum, province of Estuaire).
CAB4 is in line with the overarching goal of the entire CAB project which is to lower the cost of using fibre optic infrastructure in the region, while also promoting regional integration.
The core objective is to interconnect Gabon with Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea.
In late November 2019, Gabon and Cameroon signed an MoU cementing the legal framework governing the fibre optic interconnection.
Under the CAB initiative, the eleven countries that make up the African Central Economic and Monetary Community (CEMAC) will be digitally connected with funding from the respective governments of member countries, the World Bank and African Development Bank (AfDB).
Member states include Chad and Central African Republic (CAB1), Sao Tome and Principe (CAB2), Republic of Congo (CAB3), Gabon (CAB4) and Democratic Republic of Congo (CAB5).