The Citizen newspaper reports that Tanzania yesterday activated its National Information Communication and Technology Broadband Backbone (NICTBB), making it available in 16 regions after the completion of the first phase of its construction. The NICTBB is the terrestrial continuation of the fibre-optic submarine cable link that recently landed in Dar es Salaam, and which it is claimed, has already led to a sizeable drop in internet capacity charges. The NICTBB project was launched in 2008 and is expected to cost about TZS251 billion (USD167 million) when it is completed countrywide by the end of 2010. Its operational management will be handled by national PTO Tanzania Telecommunications Company Limited (TTCL). The first part of the project covers three routes, Northern Ring I that has points of presence (PoP) in Babati, Arusha, Moshi and Tanga. And Nothern Ring II covering Dar es Salaam, Morogoro, Iringa, Dodoma and Singida. Meanwhile, the third route (Western Link I and II) will have PoPs in Shinyanga, Mwanza, Geita, Biharamulo, Rusumo and Kambanga.