(Ecofin Agency) - Vodacom announces a 320 million rand ($19.5 million) package to fund the development of high-speed Internet connectivity in urban and rural areas in KwaZulu-Natal. Investment in fiber optics is also planned.
More than 50 new telecom base stations will be deployed throughout the province and in southeastern South Africa by the operator; 27 are already active and 19 are expected to be installed in deep rural areas by the end of the fiscal year 2021.
District municipalities that could host telecom base stations are eThekwini, Ugu, Umhlabuyalingana, Umkhanyakude, uThungulu, and Zululand. In Newcastle, 56 km of fiber will be installed, and the telecom operator will build a loop that will connect Newcastle to Madadeni, Oswezwini, and Blaauwbousch. The project is expected to be completed in December 2020.
Let’s note that the fiber network under construction - from Durban, through Scottsburg, Port Shepstone, Harding to Kokstad - will be completed by the end of the fiscal year 2021.
“We have always maintained that the key differentiator for us is the quality, strength, and reliability of our network. At Vodacom, we believe investing in our network ensures that we deliver best-in-class coverage and customer service, not only to urban areas but to people who dwell in townships and deep rural areas as well, so they are well-positioned to take advantage of the benefits of the Digital Revolution,” said Ishmael Mathinya, Executive Head for Operations for Vodacom KwaZulu Natal Region.