Prime Minister Anatole Collinet Makosso launched the test, run with technical support from Chinese tech firm ZTE, on 28 October. This coincided with MTN’s anniversary to mark 20 years of operation in the country.
MTN Congo CEO Ayham Moussa posted a tweet: “Hand-in-hand, we have written the last 20 years. We remain pioneers of progress in Africa and history was made yesterday [ 28 October 2022] with the first 5G pilot test in Congo. Let’s continue to work the magic of connectivity.
Minister of Posts, Telecommunications and the Digital Economy Léon-Juste Ibombo said the pilot was a success and achieved connectivity speeds of 10Gbps and over.
“MTN Congo is in the process of materialising Congo’s entry into 5G mobile telephony technology,” Ibombo added.
The Minister said the government will fast-track distribution of technology-neutral licences to service providers to enable them install and operate terrestrial cellular mobile networks open to the public for the provision of electronic communication services.
The pilot moves Congo on par with Gabon. Gabon Telecom; a subsidiary of Maroc Telecom Group, has been testing 5G on three sites since December 2019..
MTN Cameroon applied for a 5G testing license in 2019, but as of last year, had yet to receive official response from the telecommunications industry regulator.
The commercial rollout of the operator’s 5G network is expected by 2025.