Kenya And China's StarTimes To Provide Satellite TV To Rural Communities

Kenya's ICT Ministry and the Chinese Government have entered into a partnership to conduct a10,000 "Villages Digital Television Project" so that the underserved in 47 areas can get access to satellite television.

Kenya's ICT Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru said both the in Kenya and China governments had put elaborate structures in place to ensure that the project is implemented as planned.  

According to Mucheru, the project is expected to cost KES 842.71 Million. Equipment would cost KES 428.22 Million, while KES 414.49 million would cater for implementation.

StarTimes was appointed to roll out the project as it is a global media company and content provider working in the African television broadcasting industry.

For the project, sixteen thousand individual households in 800 villages will have access to satellite tv as they will be connected to a high definition set-top box, a satellite dish, and its accessories. Also, 2,400 public institutions will be connected through a satellite projector TV system and 32-inch TV sets.

StarTimes Kenya CEO David Zhang pointed out that the village project in Kenya will create over 1,600 direct job opportunities as the intention of this project is aimed at training at least two maintenance engineers in each of the affected 800 villages to sustain the project. Hundreds of other engineers will be enrolled and trained to undertake installation ahead of October which is the completion date. Over one hundred and thirty engineers have been trained so far in an effort to implement the project fully.

This excellent project is aimed at bridging the digital gulf regarding access to technology. Many African countries are struggling to close this divide and bring information and digital technology to remote areas. On completion, the project would help rural African families have access to information about the world, including improved knowledge on agriculture, science and sanitation, which will, in turn, empower them and reduce poverty.

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