The Government of Uganda has secured sh700.7b (USD 200 million) funding from the World Bank to enable the country to expand access to high-speed and affordable internet.
The funds will also help improve the efficiency of digitally-enabled public service delivery, and strengthen digital inclusion in Uganda, the Bank said.
According to a release from the global financial institutions, the new Uganda Digital Acceleration Project-GovNet (UDAP-GovNet) will support the extension of 1,000 km of the national backbone fiber infrastructure, an additional 500 km of fiber optic network links between towns.
The project also includes mobile broadband connections for 900 government administrative units and service centers in underserved areas, and 828 Wi-Fi hotspots in select locations to support access to online services among rural and peri-urban, underserved, and unserved communities.
“Transforming Uganda’s digital infrastructure is an urgent necessity for post-COVID-19 recovery,” said Tony Thompson, World Bank Country Manager for Uganda. “We look forward to the time when all citizens can access high-quality and low-cost internet, public services online, a digital economy driving growth, innovation, and job creation."
With $140 million in financing from the International Development Association (IDA) and a $60 million grant, the project will support the implementation of the governments’ flagship initiative, GovNet, which contributes to the objectives of Digital Uganda Vision and the Digital Transformation Program under the National Development Plan III.
"It (the project) will help develop shared platforms for ministries, departments, and agencies to efficiently deliver digitally-enabled public services to citizens and businesses throughout the country," the statement said.