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Zimbabwe approves Starlink licence

By , ITWeb
Zimbabwe , 27 May 2024
Zimbabwe's President, Emmerson Mnangagwa.
Zimbabwe's President, Emmerson Mnangagwa.

Zimbabwe has finally granted Starlink a licence to operate in the Southern African country.

President Emmerson Mnangagwa of Zimbabwe announced the development on X (formerly Twitter) on Saturday, saying one of the strategic pillars that anchors the republic’s developmental agenda under Vision 2030 is innovation, science and technology.

The president said prioritisation of the digital economy and the emerging importance of technology in “our day-to-day activities requires government to lead from the front in providing an environment where investment in technology is promoted.”

The development comes weeks after the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (POTRAZ), Zimbabwe's telecom regulator, warned that individuals and businesses discovered advertising and distributing Starlink internet services' equipment will be arrested.

Subsequently, the regulator has been conducting nationwide raids to arrest those utilising Starlink equipment and services.

On Saturday, Mnangagwa clarified the situation. He said: “I have approved the licensing of Starlink by POTRAZ to provide advanced internet and related digital processing services in Zimbabwe through its sole and exclusive local partner, IMC Communications (Pvt) Ltd.”

SpaceX, in which Elon Musk is a major shareholder, operates Starlink, a satellite internet system that covers more than 60 countries.

SpaceX began launching Starlink satellites in 2019.

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