USTDA funds studies in Nigeria, S. Africa
BMWorldwide — San Francisco —The U.S. Trade and Development Agency announced grant funding for a feasibility study that will support the efforts of Content Oasis Limited to expand internet access to unserved and underserved areas across Nigeria. Content Oasis selected Virginia-based Fraym, Inc. to conduct the study.
USTDA also announced a feasibility study to expand broadband infrastructure for half a million people in South Africa’s Western Cape province. California-based Global Resources, Inc., a certified woman-owned small business, will conduct the study.
“USTDA is proud to expand its portfolio of activities that advance South Africa’s digital transformation goals,” said Enoh T. Ebong, USTDA’s Director. “Under our Access Africa initiative, USTDA is working with partners such as the Western Cape Government to support planning for the deployment of critical broadband infrastructure.”
“USTDA’s assistance will support the expansion of ‘last mile’ fixed wireless connectivity for more than a million Nigerians,” said Enoh T. Ebong, USTDA’s Director. “Through our Access Africa initiative, USTDA is connecting high-quality U.S. solutions to promote internet access in Nigeria and communities all across Africa.”
USTDA’s study will identify and select priority locations for deployments of 800 fixed wireless base stations to expand internet access across Nigeria. The study will also include a review of technology solutions, final design configurations and estimated pricing, an economic analysis, and recommended financing and implementation plans.
USTDA’s feasibility study will advance the Western Cape Government’s (WCG) goal of connecting each town and village in the province to affordable high-speed broadband networks. The study will assess the economic and technical viability of deploying new broadband infrastructure across the province, as well as potential ownership and operations models for future broadband deployments.
“The U.S. government’s support to expand broadband infrastructure in the Western Cape aims to create economic opportunities and promote mutual prosperity,” said Consul General Todd Haskell. “These goals are the foundation of our trade and investment promotion partnership with the provincial government. Our commitment to these goals ensures that the United States is the top foreign direct investor in the province and the province’s top export market with over $1.5 billion in bilateral trade annually.”
The Premier of the Western Cape, Alan Winde, said: “I am thrilled by the signing of this agreement today. It marks yet another leap forward to freedom of connection, to the world and its economy, for our citizens. It is my hope that this investment will one day soon deliver greater ease for entrepreneurs to create and build their businesses, for job-seekers to pursue opportunities and work, and for learners to be able to study and thrive at school, and I look forward to receiving the final product. Improving broadband access, particularly in our most disconnected communities, is a real enabler of growth, and this feasibility study will tell us how best to achieve this.”
“Content Oasis has always worked towards a Nigeria where universal access to broadband Internet is possible,” said Diseye Isoun, the Founder of Content Oasis. “This partnership with USTDA and its Access Africa initiative will allow us to leverage satellite technology to advance inclusive, secure, and sustainable connectivity across the country. Using data mining techniques, analysis and demographic data, we can choose economically viable locations to target the capital investments required when rolling out our networks.”
This project advances Access Africa, USTDA’s initiative to advance the development of inclusive, secure, and sustainable ICT infrastructure across Africa, and the U.S. government’s Prosper Africa initiative to substantially increase two-way trade and investment between the U.S. and Africa.