The Uganda Electricity Transmission Company Ltd (UETCL) has signed a deal with ZTE of China to upgrade and extend its fibre-optic transmission networks under a USD2.5 million vendor financing arrangement. The utility firm is to replace infrastructure installed in 2003 with new DWDM equipment, giving a major capacity boost for its wholesale ISP customers. According to a report from Geeska Afrika, networks between Kampala, Jinja and Tororo regions and Malaba on the Kenyan border will be the first to be upgraded, improving Uganda’s links to international submarine cables which land on the Kenyan coast. The second phase includes Soroti, Lira, Masaka and the Fort Portal-Hoima area, and will be connected to Rwanda through the Mirama border post. UETCL’s managing director Eriasi Kiyemba said: ‘Local consumers will eventually benefit from lower user costs charged on data products. We expect this venture to yield strong returns after three-five years of operation.’
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