South Africa may not be getting a new undersea cable any time soon, but near-neighbour Angola has signed up for a fibre-optic submarine network to link six coastal provinces. 

Angola Telecom has signed up Ericsson to supply the entire infrastructure, including the fibre-optic cable, transmission equipment and services in the contract worth $70-million.
The network, to be known as Adones (Angola Domestic Network System), will cover almost the entire length of Angola's 1 600 km coastline, from Cabinda province in the North to Namibe in the South, and will be used to deliver telecommunications and connectivity to the region.
"We are proud to have been awarded this contract by Angola Telecom, in recognition of our proven ability to provide appropriate turnkey solutions, including infrastructure, transmission equipment and services," comments Jan Embro, head of Ericsson's Market Unit sub-Saharan Africa (MUSA).
Expected to be completed by the end of 2008, the new submarine fibre-optic network will supply the coastal region with uninterrupted telecommunications and connectivity at an economical price.
"This is a very exciting and important project for us," says João Avelino, president and CEO of Angola Telecom. "Consumers in the coastal regions will benefit tremendously from increased, better quality communications services and, ultimately, the low cost of these services will enable the region's industries and businesses to be more competitive in the world economy."
Ericsson's involvement in Africa and the Middle East spans the full spectrum of telecoms, from infrastructure to value-added services and the organisation remains enthusiastic about making its vision of a world of pervasive communication a reality in Africa too.
One of its main objectives is to establish a leading position in the emerging mobile datacoms market by driving the development of third-generation mobile networks and, thereby, bringing the Internet within the grasp of many Africans for the first time.