The Internet Society in Partnership with Facebook to Expand IXPs Across Africa


TechInAfrica – The Internet Society has just announced its partnership with Facebook to expand Internet Exchange Points (IXP) in Africa. For your information, the Internet Society is a global non-profit organization that is devoted to the advancement, evolution, and use of the internet.

The Internet Society
The Internet Society via

IXP enables multiple local and international networks, ISPs, and content providers to efficiently interconnect their networks through a process called ‘Peering’. The peering process allows the networks to exchange Internet traffic through an arrangement.

Based on statistics, 42% of African countries are lacking IXPs, meaning that their domestic Internet traffic is mostly exchanged outside of their country. It is usually either through satellite or submarine fiber in many international hubs to get to their destination. As a result, it brings poor end-user experiences and discourages hosting content locally which are the major factors in the development of the local Internet environment.

Through Peering process, it helps to keep domestic Internet traffic local by offloading traffic from expensive international links onto lower-cost local links. Consequently, ISPs can offer better Internet experiences to end-users and drive boost interest in the locally hosting content.

The partnership between the Internet Society and Facebook is specifically focused on promoting IXP infrastructure development, training, as well as community engagement with a goal to increase the number of IXPs and supporting the expansion of IXPs in order to meet the increasing demand in Africa. Based on many studies, Peering in Africa is beneficial as it gives users access to have faster, inexpensive, and reliable networks.

“The Internet community implemented the aim to have at least 80% of the Internet traffic used in Africa is accessible locally, and 20% sourced outside the continent by 2020.” States Dawit Bekele, the Africa Regional Bureau Director of the Internet Society,” he continued, “Seeing from our many activities in promoting interconnection and hosting in Africa, it seems that we are getting closer to that target. Additionally, the partnership with Facebook adds a bigger possibility to achieve it.”

Africa IXP Association (Af-IX) reports that there are at least 44 active IXPs are spread in 32 African countries resulting in a 275% growth of locally exchange Internet traffic for the past 10 years. During the same period, traffic exchange at the African IXPs mounted from o.16Gbps to 412Gbps with more than 800 networks connected at these IXPs recently.

“We admire the Internet Society’s excellent work to improve connectivity across Africa by providing IXPs,” Kojo Boakye, the Head, Connectivity and Access, Africa of Facebook said. “The collaboration with the Internet Society enables us to develop Africa’s IXP environment by distributing resources such as training and equipment to most-needed areas.” Boakye closes his statement.

About the Internet Society
The Internet Society is the trusted independent source for Internet information and thought leadership from around the world. It is also the organizational home for the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). With its principled vision and substantial technological foundation, the Internet Society promotes open dialogue on Internet policy, technology, and future development among users, companies, governments, and other organizations. Working with its members and Chapters around the world, the Internet Society enables the continued evolution and growth of the Internet for everyone.  For more information, visit

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