Starlink Licensed to Operate in Botswana

Botswana has officially granted a license to SpaceX’s Starlink unit, marking the country as the latest in Africa to authorize the internet services provider. This decision comes in the wake of threats to restrict Starlink’s services in regions where it operates without proper licensing.

President Mokgweetsi Masisi, in a statement on his office’s official Facebook page, mentioned that regulators were urged to expedite the approval process for the license. The decision followed a recent meeting between President Masisi and Starlink executives in Dallas.

“I gave them two weeks to fast-track this, and they have already been given a license,” President Masisi confirmed.

Starlink has been facing pressure to halt operations in various countries where it lacks the necessary licenses. This scrutiny intensified after a Bloomberg News investigation in March exposed the widespread unauthorized use of the satellite network.

Last week, Zimbabwe also announced that it had granted an operating license to Starlink. The company, which currently serves over 2.6 million customers worldwide, provides broadband internet via a network of approximately 5,500 satellites, which SpaceX started deploying in 2019.

President Masisi indicated that Starlink services would soon be available in Botswana, offering crucial connectivity for farmers and residents in remote areas where traditional fixed broadband services are unavailable.

A spokesman for the Botswana Communications Regulatory Authority declined to comment on the development.

Despite the absence of an official operating license, some internet users and service providers in Botswana have publicly disclosed their use of Starlink’s services through roaming kits.

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