Although Africa’s digital divide is narrowing, the cost of internet is struggling to come down. On 30 June, the last section of the Africa Coast to Europe (ACE) submarine cable – which links France to South Africa and connects 10 African countries, including Senegal, Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana – was put into service.
It is the latest example that demonstrates Africa’s progress on internet coverage: the 17,000km-long cable represented a $700m investment by a 20-member consortium that included the French group Orange, which contributed $250m.
Despite this good news and the development of undersea cables linking the continent, only 29% of Africans have access to the internet compared to 45% of people in Asia, according to the latest report published by the Alliance for Affordable Internet (A4AI) in December 2020.
Price for a giga of mobile data in 2020 (in dollars)
Every year, the
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