Rural Connectivity Programme

The Rural Connectivity Programme seeks to extend the coverage of mobile telephone services as far as possible into all areas of the country where access to such services are not adequately available, and where existing licensed operators have proven unwilling or unable to expand their networks, due to commercial or other technological constraints.

The programme also ensures the provision of Internet Points of Presence in underserved and unserved communities.

Rural Telephony Project

RTP is the flagship project of GIFEC that seeks to extend telephony access to all Unserved and Underserved communities in the country.

The Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) typically serve communities that are commercially viable, leaving many low-income communities without telephony coverage. These are the communities that we define as Underserved or Unserved, which GIFEC seeks to cover, towards achieving our mandate of Universal Access.

The GIFEC RTP establishes telecommunication infrastructure in rural areas, in partnership with the MNOs and other technology providers in the ecosystem such as Huawei, American Towers Corporation (ATC), Helios Towers Ghana (HTG), etc.

The RTP has evolved over the years, cumulatively constructing 120 Telephony Sites, comprising Common Telecom Facility (CTFs) and other Rural Telephony Sites, between 2005 and 2016.

GIFEC Satellite Hub

A Satellite Hub was introduced in 2016 as part of the RCP, backhauling some of the Rural Sites as well as providing Internet Access to some hard-to-reach communities.

The installation of a VSAT Hub is to provide access to voice and data services for remote communities in the country.

It is to also provide the same satellite communication services, delivering a terrestrial-grade experience with voice and data that can be extended to all unserved communities in Ghana.

The hub connects the following:

  • 22 RTP Sites

  • 80 Basic and Secondary Schools

Rural Star UMTS 900

Between 2017 and 2019, GIFEC entered a Tripartite partnership with Huawei and MTN to deploy 413 Rural Sites, a project that introduced the award-winning Rural Star UMTS 900 Technology.

The project connects rural communities in Ghana with population below 1,000, with voice and data services.

The project adopts the following:

  • Tripartite Co-operation Model between GIFEC, Mobile Network Operator and a Private Investor, for efficient CAPEX and OPEX.

  • Deployment is done through the innovative UMTS 900 Rural Star Technology

  • Sites are solar and grid-powered

  • 3G and above data services provided

Ghana Rural Telephony and Digital Inclusion Project (GRT&DIP)

In 2019, the Government of Ghana (GoG), through a strategic agreement with Huawei and China National Technical Import & Export Corporation (CNTIC), secured funding from the China EXIM Bank to establish 2,016 Rural Telephony Sites in as many communities across the country, envisioned to provide mobile network coverage to about 3.4 million more citizens.

This project started late 2020 and was envisioned to be completed by August 2023, mainly due to delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.