Malawi, Tanzania sign digital, communication MoU

By Patricia Kapulula

The Government of Malawi and the United Republic of Tanzania have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Communication and Digital that would ensure that the two countries are connected on the data corridor.

The agreement was signed at Kamuzu Palace in Lilongwe on Friday when Malawi and Tanzania held bilateral talks.

The bilateral talks were part of activities that the Tanzanian President Dr Samia Suluhu Hassan is undertaking during her three-day state visit to Malawi.

Minister of Information, Moses Kunkuyu and Tanzania Minister of Information, Communication and ICT, Nape Moses Nnauye signed the agreement on behalf of their respective governments.

In an interview after the signing of the MoU, Kunkuyu described the signing of the agreement as important saying it will accord Malawi data affordability which will be enhanced by connecting Malawi to the undersea cable through non-commercial avenues.

According to Kunkuyu, Malawi, currently, connects undersea cables to Tanzania and other countries via vendor cables which, he said, is expensive as Malawi is a landlocked country.

“When we connect directly through state to state infrastructure, such as ESCOM and TCL of Tanzania, we are going to lower the running costs of the bandwidth into the country thereby lowering the overall cost of data for consumers in Malawi. So, this is going to enhance connectivity, affordability and reliability,” said Kunkuyu.

In a separate interview, Nnauye said the MoU will cooperate on communication and information technology.

He said Tanzania is determined to cooperate on cybersecurity, exchange of information, connecting the people of the two countries on connectivity and diplomacy of the data corridor.

“Communication and information technology are enablers of other sectors in the cooperation. They are areas that determine the future,” said Nnauye.