Mauritius Telecom has won the Government's call for bids to link the 550km distant Rodriguez Island (population ~41,000) with submarine fibre connectivity.

SA's annual budget this year includes SA Rand 1.9billion for pilot broadband projects in 8 municipalities which will include connecting rural schools. The government said 6 135 goverment institutions and 4 983 schools had already been connected to the Internet.

Senegal's ICT professional society, OPTIC, has said the government is restricting market entry for internet providers by charging high license fees. Three new ISPs were recently approved with minimum bids set at CFA 100million (about USD 160,000 USD).

To improve the competitive environment Tanzania is implementing number portability between mobile operators in March 2017.

Swiss-based internet provider YooMee Africa's Cameroon subsidiary has formed a joint venture with the incumbent state owned operator Camtel to set up a Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) by mid 2017.

The Government of Zimbabwe has announced that it will spend USD 250m from the Universal Service Fund to deploy 600 towers, mainly in rural areas, for use by telecom operators. The project is being managed by the national regulator, Potraz. 

Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Guinea, Mali, Senegal and Togo have all now agreed to that no roaming fees will be charged by operators when their customers travel between these countries. The agreement, which was announced late last year, is to be in place by March 31 2017, although further details have not been made public.

At the same time, the ECOWAS Commission, of which these countries are all member states, is in the process of drawing up a roadmap and model regulations for eliminating roaming fees from all of West Africa. A similar initiative is under way in East Africa.

French Group Vivendi Africa (GVA) has been given a fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) broadband licence in Gabon. Sister company Canal Plus will likely be providing content.