The Zimbabwe Internet Exchange Point unveiled yesterday is expected to reduce the cost of data, a Potraz official said.
This IXP was much anticipated by the public who wish the data costs down along with companies wailing about getting the bandwidth from abroad at a time when foreign currency challenges have the nation on chokehold.
BY Kudakwashe Pembere
Potraz Director General Dr Gift Machengete while addressing delegates at the launch of Zimbabwe IXP said this new development is set to keep high internet costs at bay.
“This is a huge feat because by keeping local internet traffic local, the IXP will lower the cost of bandwidth. A huge feat because of the promise of progress and national development that the IXP holds. Therefore, as a nation, we stand tall… as a nation, we stand proud… as a nation, we stand excited to unveil the IXP,” he said.
In 2015, Zimbabwe won the tender to set up a regional internet exchange point which came with it a grant of $200 000 from the African Union Commission.
This has been your project as much as ours, and as such, it would have been malign not to have you here today,” said Dr Machengete.
The Head of AUC delegation Mr Moctar Yedaly witnessed the launch of Zimbabwe’s IXP. He said by 2018, all African countries should have their own IXPs.
ICT, Postal and Courier Services Deputy minister Dr Win Mlambo was grateful for the AUC’s financial and technical assistance provided to set up Zimbabwe IXP.
He revealed that the country has to date received $100 000 from AUC.
““Today therefore I am happy to announce that the country has so far received a total of $100 000 of that amount from the commission towards the first phase of setting up a regional internet exchange point,” said Dr Mlambo.
ISP companies including Liquid Telecom, Powertell, Dandemutande, Africom took part in setting up the IXP with TelOne providing the location for set up
Dr Mlambo said the next phase will focus on capacity building, training of global engineers, encomposing internet Service Providers, and academic research, establishing an association that will run the exchange and grow the IXP into a regional IXP
The IXP will bring with it cost serving by eliminating the need to link the local traffic through the more expensive long distance in Zimbabwe data is expensive as compared to other countries which transit their traffic through Zimbabwe