Google Announces Umoja Cable to Connect Africa and Australia, Boosting Digital Infrastructure

During the historic Kenya State Visit to the US, the tech giant announced Umoja, the first-ever subsea fiber optic cable route directly linking Africa and Australia.

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Google Announces Umoja Cable to Connect Africa and Australia

Google has unveiled a groundbreaking initiative to enhance digital connectivity and resilience across Africa. During the historic Kenya State visit to the US, the tech giant announced Umoja, the first-ever subsea fiber optic cable route directly linking Africa and Australia.

Umoja: Bridging Continents, Strengthening Connectivity

Anchored in Kenya, the Umoja cable route will traverse through Uganda, Rwanda, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and South Africa, including the Google Cloud region, before crossing the Indian Ocean to reach Australia. This strategic route aims to increase the reach, reliability, and resilience of Africa’s digital infrastructure, enabling African countries to connect more seamlessly with each other and the rest of the world.

Umoja, derived from the Swahili word for “unity,” joins the Equiano cable in Google’s Africa Connect initiative, designed to establish a robust and resilient network across the continent. By introducing a new route distinct from existing connectivity paths, Google aims to mitigate the impact of high-impact outages that have historically plagued the region.

Collaboration and Partnerships for Digital Transformation

Google has signed a Joint Statement of Collaboration with the Government of Kenya to accelerate efforts in improving connectivity through infrastructure, strengthening cyber defenses, unlocking data-driven innovation potential, and responsibly deploying AI and digital upskilling aligned with Kenya’s digital transformation ambitions.

The Umoja cable project was built in collaboration with Liquid Intelligent Technologies, forming a highly scalable route through Africa with access points that will allow other countries to benefit from the network.

Voices of Support and Significance

The announcement has garnered widespread support and recognition from global leaders, highlighting the significance of this investment in driving economic growth and digital inclusion.

Meg Whitman, U.S. Ambassador to Kenya, emphasized the importance of reliable digital infrastructure for fostering economic opportunities, stating, “This is a meaningful moment for Kenya’s digital transformation journey, and the benefits of today’s announcement will cascade across the region.

H.E. Dr. William S. Ruto, President of the Republic of Kenya, welcomed Google’s investment, calling it “a historic milestone for Kenya, Africa, and Australia.” He further highlighted the initiative’s crucial role in ensuring redundancy, resilience, and increased digital inclusion, innovation, and economic opportunities.

Hon Michelle Rowland MP, Australian Minister for Communications, applauded Google’s investment, stating, “Diversifying Australia’s connectivity and supporting digital inclusion across the globe are both incredibly important objectives, and Google’s Umoja cable will help to do just that.

With Umoja, Google aims to strengthen Africa’s digital backbone, paving the way for increased connectivity, innovation, and economic growth across the continent and beyond.