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The ACE (Africa Coast to Europe) submarine communications cable is a planned cable system along the west coast of Africa between France and South Africa.

As of November 2009, the ACE consortium financing the project consists of twenty five telecommunications operators (Baharicom [1], Benin Telecoms SA, Camtel, Companhia Santomense de Telecomunicações, Côte d’Ivoire Telecom, ETISALAT Nigeria, Expresso Telecom Group, France Télécom, Gamtel, Getesa, Globalink, Maroc Telecom, Mauritano-Tunisienne des Télécommunications, Mauritius Telecom, Office Congolais de Poste et Télécommunication, Orange Bissau, Orange Cameroun, Orange Guinée, Orange Mali, Orange Niger, Orange Spain, Sierratel, Sonatel and Togo Telecom).

The Construction and Maintenance Agreement (C&MA) of ACE submarine cable project was signed on Saturday June 5th, 2010.

The nineteen (19) signatories to the C&MA are Baharicom Development Company, Cable Consortium of Liberia, Companhia Santomense de Telecomunicações, Côte d’Ivoire Telecom, Expresso Telecom Group, France Telecom, Gambia Telecommunications Company, International Mauritania Telecom, Office Congolais des Postes et Télécommunications, Orange Cameroun, Orange Guinée, [[Orange Mali, Orange Niger, PT Comunicações, Republic of Equatorial Guinea, Republic of Gabon, Sierra Leone Cable Company, Sonatel and Sotelgui.

In its planned configuration, the 17,000 km-long fiber optic cable stretching from France to South Africa will be operational in the first half of 2012. It will connect 23 countries, either directly for coastal countries or indirectly through terrestrial links for landlocked countries Mali and Niger.

This will be the first international submarine cable to land in Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, The Gambia, Guinea, Liberia, Mauritania, Namibia, Sao Tome and Principe and Sierra Leone.

Other countries benefiting from the ACE project include Angola, Benin, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, France, Gabon, Ghana, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Portugal, Senegal, South Africa and Spain (Tenerife).

The ACE system will deploy wavelength division multiplexing (WDM) technology, which is currently the most advanced for submarine cables. With WDM, cable capacity can be increased without additional submarine work. With an overall potential capacity of 5.12 Tbps, the system will support the new 40 Gbps technology at day one, which will accommodate tomorrow’s ultra-broadband networks.

Landing points
The cable landing points are planned to be in the following countries and territories:
  • France, Penmarc’h
  • Portugal, Lisbon
  • Spain, Tenerife
  • Mauritania, Nouakchott
  • Senegal, Dakar
  • The Gambia, Banjul
  • Guinea, Conakry
  • Sierra Leone, Freetown
  • Liberia, Monrovia
  • Côte d’Ivoire, Abidjan
  • Ghana, Accra
  • Benin, Cotonou
  • Nigeria, Lagos
  • Cameroon, Kribi
  • Sao Tome and Principe, Santana
  • Equatorial Guinea, Bata
  • Gabon, Libreville
  • Democratic Republic of Congo, Muanda
  • Angola, Luanda
  • Namibia, Swakopmund
  • South Africa, Cape Town