SpaceX representatives traveled to Eastern Africa to meet with the President of Zambia Hakainde Hichilema to discuss providing Starlink internet to the country, according to the President's assistant Jito Kayumba. -"Our President's engagement with the team from SpaceX and their Starlink initiative will escalate Zambia's position in the digital economy and enable universal access to Internet and other technologies. Grateful for this initiative from visionary entrepreneur Elon Musk," said Kayumba on September 19. They also shared a photograph of the meeting via Twitter. "Looking forward to providing Starlink service to the people of Zambia!" replied Musk to the post.
Looking forward to providing Starlink service to the people of Zambia!— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 19, 2022
President Hichilema met with Starlink Head Mr. Chad Gibbs. “As you know, we intend to quickly sort out our connectivity as this is the only way we can have a truly functional e-government of the 21st Century," the president told Zambia Observer news. "We are working round the clock to ensure that facilities such as technology are put to great use so that jobs and business opportunities can be realised and this was what characterised our conversation with. Additionally we all know that good connectivity will also improve productivity thereby reducing the cost of doing business. While in office, we are ensuring that every opportunity and step we take, is done in the best interest of Zambia,” said President Hichilema.
Approximately 50% of the population in Zambia does not have access to the Internet at all and the majority of the population with access to the internet only access it through smartphones, according to local statistics. Starlink is ideal for the region because the network is easy to access from rural and remote communities. The Starlink antenna just needs an electricity source and a clear view of the sky to begin receiving internet signals from SpaceX's Starlink constellation in Low Earth Orbit. As of today, SpaceX operates around 3,300 internet-beaming satellites in space that provide internet service to 43 countries located across all seven continents. Visit Starlink.com for information about the Internet service.
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About the Author
Evelyn Janeidy Arevalo
Evelyn J. Arevalo joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover news as a Space Journalist and SpaceX Starbase Texas Correspondent. Evelyn is specialized in rocketry and space exploration. The main topics she covers are SpaceX and NASA.