We are glad to report that it has been another progressive year here at Djibouti Telecom despite the global economical challenges. The International Business division specifically has continued the upward trend with quite a few notable milestones reached. Below are the highlights of 2021:
In early 2015, Djibouti Telecom decided to build a new regional submarine cable system DARE1 (Djibouti Africa Regional Express1). This network was finally Ready For Service and launched February this year. Soon after launch, we invested further by leveraging Ciena’s GeoMesh Extreme solution to upgrade the network. This doubled the network’s capacity. Read more about DARE1 here.
new cable landing station
After much planning, a few months ago we announced the construction of a brand new Cable Landing Station. The new Cable Landing Station will be a neutral digital port which will provide an open access cable landing service to submarine cable operators for a neutral, safe and secure landing in Djibouti City. Work progress has been on time and the building is coming along nicely – read the latest update here.
On July 11th 2021, the government of Djibouti announced a bill allowing sales of stakes in public enterprises and followed that up by announcing the sale of a significant minority stake in Djibouti Telecom to “a leading strategic partner”. We announced this news here and will be sharing more exciting news on this in 2022!
NETWORK AND INFRASTRUCTURE UPGRADES
As a company we are very committed to investing in both existing and new infrastructure to best serve our customers and partners. Throughout 2021, we have accelerated the deployment of our broadband network across the country; work has been carried out to significantly increase the capacities of 4G sites in the capital and in the 5 interior regions. As well as domestic infrastructure upgrades, there have been continual upgrades to several of the international submarine cables Djibouti Telecom is part off; for example, the private company Ciena completed the upgrade of the Europe India Gateway (EIG) subsea cable to strengthen connectivity between the UK, Europe, the Middle East and India. Furthermore, plans were finalized and work begun for Ethiopia Fibre network.
GOOD PROGRESS WITH UPCOMING NETWORKS
We currently have 8 Operational cable systems and at the time of writing, we have 6 upcoming cable system projects at various stages of the network lifecycle. Namely: PEACE Cable, 2AFRICA, SMW6, AFRICA-1, IEX and BLUE-RAMAN. Throughout the year we’ve reported on key milestones for all of these upcoming networks, such as the PEACE cable landing on the shores of Marseille bringing it closer to becoming operational. 2022 will no doubt see further progress with the PEACE cable to be the first new cable to go live.
GROWTH OF D-MONEY
During 2020 we announced a new initiative by Djibouti Telecom, D-Money – a new Digital Mobile Money service launched across Djibouti allowing users to carry out digital money transfers and payments directly from their mobile phones. This new service has seen great adoption and growth throughout 2021. In November, Djibouti Telecom and D-Money partnered with a young innovative startup called Dodai in providing an essential proximity service: access to low-cost solar energy.
Despite the impact of the global pandemic on international travel, our respective teams and representatives have still managed to partake in key industry events, including: Capacity Middle East, East Africa COM, ICT2021, Submarine Networks 2021 and directly sponsored various events such as the SITA Forum.
As well as attending industry events, we have invested in professional development for our employees. There have been numerous on-site training events run by senior staff and external 3rd party experts; we’ve even had some of our staff start learning arabic online so they can better communicate with our arabic speaking partners.
2022 AND BEYOND
As we welcome the New Year we are all excited on the prospects of 2022 and what that’ll bring – it will no doubt be another landmark year in the development of Djibouti Telecom, more so with the privatisation, launch of the new CLS and expansion of our Networks and Solutions. We’ll keep you all updated here so stay tuned and best wishes for 2022 to all!