Corporate Social Investment
The objective of SEACOM's Corporate Social Investment strategy is to achieve universal ICT access for all Africans. SEACOM plans to achieve this social development objective through strategic investment in innovative social ICT initiatives, which improve access and stimulate usage of high-speed international broadband in Africa.
SUBSIDISED EDUCATIONAL CAPACITY
One of SEACOM's key Corporate Social Investment commitments is to provide accessible and affordable international bandwidth to East African higher education institutions, and since launching on 23 July 2009, we have delivered on this by supplying various East African National Research and Education Networks (NRENs) with discounted international bandwidth connectivity.
NRENs play a critical role in higher education because they're responsible for the distribution of international bandwidth to local universities and research institutions, enabling their connection to high-speed Internet.
We also provide discounted capacity to the Tertiary Education and Research Network of South Africa (TENET) and the Kenya Education Network Trust (KENET), which are members of the greater UbuntuNet Alliance group of East African NRENs. With SEACOM's assistance, TENET has actively reduced the cost of international bandwidth for universities and research institutions in South Africa by 98%.
SEACOM is also providing international bandwidth directly to the University of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania and the Universidade Eduardo Mondlane in Mozambique.
The role SEACOM sees itself playing on the journey towards creating an East African 'Knowledge Society' is in reducing the cost of international bandwidth connectivity, improving the access to information, enabling knowledge to be shared, stimulating innovation through research, creating new industries and opportunities for employment, and providing a catalyst for multi-stakeholder investment into local communications infrastructure.
Social and Environmental Responsibility
SEACOM is a company committed to sustaining the natural wealth of the environment, as well as minimising social impacts that could be adversely effected. By maintaining their commitment to designing, constructing and operating their fibre optic cable systems in a manner that is compliant with their surroundings, SEACOM have adhered to the project's Social and Environment Management System (SEMS).
SEACOM's Social and Environmental Management System
The project's SEMS has been devised in line with the Equator Principles - an industry standard for managing social and environmental risk. This standard is a benchmark that encourages SEACOM to apply the following ethics:
- All activities must be undertaken in line with applicable international standards.
- Best industry practice must be assumed at all times.
- Meet requirements of national legislation of all countries through which the SEACOM cable passes.
- Reduce social and environmental impacts by recognising the source of potential threats during construction activities, and managing them in a sustainable manner.
- Minimise social and environmental impacts during operation of the project.
- Communication with contractors to ensure that their operations in no way affect compliance with the standard.
- Training in social and environmental matters must take place to ensure that all employees understand the policy and are in agreement with it.
- Implement reasonable health and safety precautions to protect staff and contracted workers at all times.
SEACOM's executive management are responsible for ensuring that adequate resources are constantly available to enable fulfilment of the above-mentioned principles. The policy as a whole is under constant supervision, and is regularly reviewed to ensure that best social and environmental practice is carried out at all times.