Starlink readies for South Africa
December 6, 2023
By Chris Forrester
Contrary to some recent reports that Starlink would not be available in South Africa, local sources say that SpaceX is making moves that would see its equipment sold legitimately in the country.
Just days ago South African communications regulator Icasa, in the nation’s official Government Gazette, published a notice about “illegal provision of satellite internet services” in the country.
However, behind the scenes it seems that Icasa has been granting “type approval” certificates to three local enterprises (Paratus Telecommunications, Magic Space Dust and Data X Lab) and comprising products linked to Starlink.
Officials have confirmed that it appears that Starlink has authorised the moves for type approval.
Paratus is reportedly one of Starlink’s pan-African distribution partners, while a Starlink router’s application was handled by Data X Lab. Important ground station ‘gateways’ were in the name of Paratus and Magic Space Dust.
Current legislation needs any foreign business entering South Africa needs a 30 per cent local participation.