Regional and International Initiatives

Universal Access: ZICTA

The Government through ZICTA (the ICT Regulatory body) has embarked on an initiative to promote low-cost, quality, reliable and affordable ICT goods and services that are universally accessible to and meet the needs of the Zambian community.

Under this initiative, ZICTA has supported ZAMREN to provide optic fiber last mile connectivity of UNZA, CBU, Mulungushi University, etc to the ZESCO optic fiber grid. Last mile connections of more institutions in the education and research category to the ZAMREN network are being planned and implemented. Institutions connected to the ZAMREN network are already enjoying a five-fold reduction in the cost of dedicated bandwidth.

The UbuntuNet Backbone Network

UbuntuNet Alliance for Research and Education Networking is an association of NRENs in Africa. The UbuntuNet Alliance exists to provide regional and international connectivity and Internet services to its member NRENs in Eastern and Southern Africa (“the Region”), on a non-profit basis. The Alliance provides specialised interconnections with other research and education networks worldwide – interconnections that are available only to bona-fide NRENs – and also connectivity to the general “commodity” Internet worldwide. The Alliance is in the process of designing a high-speed backbone network that will inter-connect the NRENs and provide them all with connectivity to major research and education networking gateways and general Internet gateways operated by the Alliance. NRENs as local operators of the UbuntuNet backbone:- The UbuntuNet Alliance does not contemplate incorporating and seeking the required electronic communications licenses in each country of the region. Rather, in each country of the region, the Alliance intends to support the local NREN by contracting the NREN to provide and operate those portions of the UbuntuNet Backbone that lie within the country

The AfricaConnect Project: Completed

The African Union Commission and European Commission announced a major project, known as AfricaConnect, which undertook the initial deployment of the UbuntuNet Alliance Network backbone. This can be regarded as the first Phase of the overall vision of Africa Connect, a dedicated research and education network interconnecting the entire continent and to the rest of the global research and education networking community. The project budget was Euro 14.2 million of which EC funded 80% and the 20% by recipient NRENs This is a result of a one-year study commissioned by the European Commission (FEAST) to explore the feasibility of deploying a regional backbone dedicated to NRENs in sub-Saharan Africa to each other and to GEANT ZAMREN is a full member of UbuntuNet Alliance and actively participated in the AfricaConnect Project. ZAMREN made its contribution of Euro 250,000 towards the AfricaConnect project. The AfricaConnect Project 1 has been completed. For more information visit AfricaConnect Project