Rwanda launches telecentres in rural areas

19 Jun 2009

The government of Rwanda will open a further 18 telecentres nationwide within one month to help enable access to ICT services, the minister of ICT, Romain Murenzi, told Rwandan daily The New Times. Murenzi added that there are currently twelve fully functional telecentres in the country providing services such as internet, telephony and money transfer, while work on a further 18 is underway. As reported by CommsUpdate on 29 January 2009, the government plans to provide the whole country with access to the internet by 2012, with the aim of closing the digital divide between rural and urban areas. Soon after the announcement the state began rolling out the first phase of the telecentre project. Poor telecoms infrastructure has stifled ICT growth in Malawi; according to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms database, the country had only 126,000 fixed lines at the end of 2008, representing a teledensity of just 0.9% of the population, while the number of broadband subscribers stood at just over 1,000.