Located in Central Africa, landlocked Burundi is a land of hills, mountains and plateaux. With a population of nearly 12 million, the country is highly dependent upon agriculture, which employs 90 percent of its people. Burundi is a country that is attractive to investors and the government realises the importance of telecommunications. Outside of rural areas, the telecoms infrastructure requires development, and the World Bank has recently started a joint venture with telco operators in the country to make improvements by building a national fibre backbone, which will improve access to submarine cables. Satellite is also an important communications medium within the country, especially in rural areas.
3G and LTE services have been launched in Burundi, but with many people living outside of urban areas, it can be a challenge to reach a great deal of the population and connect them with mobile services, which are predominantly used for voice and data. At present, there is 50 percent mobile penetration in the country and fixed line penetration stands at 0.2 percent. Therefore, mobile network operators are working hard to extend their reach to gain subscribers in more rural areas of the country. Satellite technology is an enabler to MNOs, and can rapidly and cost-effectively help them to reach pockets of population that they otherwise would be unable to access due to the sheer cost of building and operating cell towers. BusinessCom Networks offers a range of solutions to MNOs that will facilitate this extension of their network out from urban to rural areas and enable them to extend their subscriber base at a fraction of the cost of building out their network in the conventional way.
Microfinance is also emerging as an important means of empowerment for Burundians and satellite technology can be instrumental in enabling people to access a means of finance. 4 percent of Burundians are members of microfinance institutions and this is growing year on year. With 90 percent of the population engaged in farming, microfinance can make a huge difference to farmers and their families. These initiatives have become a popular means of securing financial services for small businesses and entrepreneurs that currently lack access to banking and finance-related services. By providing access to small loans, bank accounts and insurance services, low-income people can gain the opportunity to become self-sufficient and to manage their own finances, enabling them to save money and become more prosperous. VSAT networks, like those provided by BusinessCom Networks can improve access to this kind of financial help, providing a quick and easy way in which individual and communities can connect with and access financial help.
For Burundi, satellite can also play a pivotal role in the health and education sectors, providing a means of connectivity for rural clinics and to provide access to important health information and services and also telemedicine, which is becoming increasingly popular. In education too, e-Learning via satellite provides an extremely valuable tool for students located in rural areas.
Opportunities in Healthcare
BusinessCom Network’s expertise in the deployment of satellite networks can enable all of these applications and many more – all of which can help to enrich and empower the people of Burundi, no matter where they are located.
BusinessCom offers the following satellite internet services in Burundi:
- Broadband Internet access
- Toll quality VoIP and Videoconferencing with CIR
- Reliable SLA through FDMA and D-TDMA with 98% efficiency on payload
- Star, Mesh and hybrid Star/Mesh topology networks
- Full support of accelerated VPN, CITRIX, ERM and other business applications
- Highly secure operation with optional AES embedded encryption
- Global C-Band coverage and sub-Sahara Ku-Band
- Landing at top tier redundant IP facilities in Western Europe and United States
- Sentinel-based QoS, bandwidth management and optimization platform