Alcatel-Lucent Brings Cloud Networking Technologies to Burkina Faso

The country will stimulate economic growth by becoming the first West African nation to use the cloud to connect government, education, cities and industries

Alcatel-Lucent is to provide the government of Burkina Faso with cloud networking technology that will enable it to develop new digital public services, such as e-government, e-learning and e-health.  

Alcatel-Lucent will supply the West African nation with its NFV (Network Functions Virtualisation), Cloudband and IP platforms, which will be integrated into the ‘G-Cloud’ infrastructure to being built around virtualised network resources from cloud nodes in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso’s capital, and five provinces.

Approximately 400 buildings in 13 regional urban centres will be connected through a 513 kilometre (km) fibre optic IP/MPLS wide area network. Backhaul will be provided by an 800 km fibre optic transmission system that will become part of Burkina Faso’s national fibre optics backbone.

Alcatel-Lucent and the Ministry of Development of the Digital Economy and Posts as well as the National Agency for the Promotion of ICT (ANPTIC) in Burkina Faso, are celebrating the ‘G-Cloud’ project launching. Their excellencies, Mr Yacouba Isaac ZIDA, the Prime Minister of Burkina Faso; Dr Nébila Amadou YARO, the Minister of Digital Economy and Post; and Mr Bo Jensen, the Danish Ambassador to Burkina Faso, were among the local and national dignitaries who attended a ceremony on 12 November  in Ouagadougou.

The project is part of an ambitious IT and telecommunications strategy being administered by the country’s Ministry for Digital Development (MDENP - Ministère du Développement de l'Économie Numérique et des Postes), and intends to enable connectivity between public departments and municipalities via an e-government platform; an integral element of Burkina Faso’s Economic and Social Development Strategy, SCADD (Stratégie pour une croissance accéléré et un développement durable).

The network will support the anticipated increase in future demand for digital services to the health, education, justice, immigration, parliament and other sectors in the coming years. Under the agreement with MDENP, Alcatel-Lucent will support network and infrastructure operations to be installed by 2017.

Financing for the project is being facilitated by the Danish government through the Danida Business Finance agency, whose contribution to the project amounts to €30 million (19.9 billion FCFA) with a direct grant subsidy of €15.5 million (10 billion FCFA).