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Meta’s Submarine Cable Lands in Akwa Ibom State: Potential Economic Benefits

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Destiny Young
Destiny Younghttp://linktr.ee/youngdestinya
Destiny Young is a highly credentialed information technology professional with over 14 years of industry experience. An HND/BSc (Hons) in Computer Science graduate. He holds a Master of Technology degree in Information Technology from the prestigious University of South Africa (UNISA). He is a Distinction-grade MBA alumnus of Nexford University, Washington, DC, where he also obtained a First-class MSc degree in Digital Transformation. His professional development direction is in Cybersecurity, Digital Transformation, and Business Intelligence. He is a member of the British Computer Society (BCS), the Chartered Institute of Administration of Nigeria (CIA), the Nigeria Computer Society (NCS), etc.

On Wednesday, February 20, February 2024, Meta’s submarine cable landed in Akwa Ibom State. The 45 kilometres cable is a fibre optic cable that connects Akwa Ibom State in Nigeria’s South-south region with Europe, Asia, and other parts of Africa en route the Atlantic Ocean. This monumental project will put Akwa Ibom State on the map in terms of ICT and digital technology. This singular project, when fully implemented and managed, is capable of driving IT innovation in the state and, by extension, impacting the economy of the region positively. ICT currently drives the world economy.

Governor Umo Eno, during a ceremony at Iboe Terminal), Ibeno Local Government Area to receive MainOne, the company handling the cable project for META, said, “It is befitting that you have decided to launch a signature project today in Akwa Ibom. I want to thank God for the things that you have brought here to us. We celebrate you, and we just want to assure you that we will do all we can to support this project. While we celebrate this great effort that would engrave Akwa Ibom State on the map of ICT innovation as well as economic and technological benefit around the world, we want to reassure our people of our readiness to partner with creative entrepreneurship projects and support them to thrive.”

The implication of Meta’s sub-marine (Fiber Optic) cable termination in Akwa Ibom State is that this location will serve as the launching hub for high-speed internet in this region.

That means, once the cable terminates in those locations from the sea (Ocean Belt), a physical internet infrastructure powerhouse will be built in those locations, just like an electricity distribution company, where the internet will be sold in bulk to internet service providers (ISP). The providers, who already have telecommunications base stations, will then deploy the high-speed internet to their consumers.

There is a positive outlook to this, as 5G availability will be faster and coverage will be quicker. From a business perspective, Meta wants to leverage Nigeria’s population. Nigeria, with about 250 million people, has over 150 million people with no internet access.

Impliedly, 150 million people in Nigeria are not in Meta’s ecosystem; this is where it makes economic sense for Meta to invest in onboarding that population on the internet through the landing of its internet sub-marine cables in Nigeria’s most strategic locations easily accessible by the Atlantic Ocean.

The following are the benefits of Fiber Optic network connectivity:

  • High-speed internet provided by fiber optics enables businesses to operate seamlessly. Faster data transfer and reduced latency lead to improved productivity.
  • Telecommuting becomes more efficient, breaking down geographical barriers and allowing employees to work remotely without disruptions.
  • Broadband expansion, especially in rural areas, stimulates job creation. As more people gain access to high-speed internet, new businesses emerge, leading to increased employment opportunities.
  • Population migration to areas with reliable connectivity can rejuvenate local economies and foster growth.
  • Access to information fuels innovation. Fiber optics enable entrepreneurs to research, collaborate, and develop new products and services.
  • Start-ups and small businesses benefit from affordable high-speed internet, fostering a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem.
  • The World Bank estimates that a 10% increase in broadband penetration can result in a 1.2% jump in real per capita GDP growth in developed economies.

By: DESTINY YOUNG | IT Operations and Technology Infrastructure Engineer

Destiny Young
Destiny Young is a highly credentialed information technology professional with over 14 years of industry experience. An HND/BSc (Hons) in Computer Science graduate. He holds a Master of Technology degree in Information Technology from the prestigious University of South Africa (UNISA). He is a Distinction-grade MBA alumnus of Nexford University, Washington, DC, where he also obtained a First-class MSc degree in Digital Transformation. His professional development direction is in Cybersecurity, Digital Transformation, and Business Intelligence. He is a member of the British Computer Society (BCS), the Chartered Institute of Administration of Nigeria (CIA), the Nigeria Computer Society (NCS), etc.
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