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US SpaceX Reportedly Ceases Starlink Terminals Service in South Africa

© Photo X / @SpaceXStarlink equipment
Starlink equipment - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 16.04.2024
The Starlink system has been widely adopted in South Africa in recent years by Internet users who have reportedly purchased terminals in countries where Starlink is licensed to operate.
US company SpaceX, owned by billionaire Elon Musk, is suspending service in South Africa for terminals of its global satellite communications system, Starlink, local media reported.
The Starlink system will cease operations throughout the country by April 30, the media added.
The decision follows the refusal of the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa to grant a license for Starlink Internet access terminals to operate in the country.

In August 2023, South Africa banned the import of Starlink kits. The country's telecommunications regulator required local internet service providers to stop purchasing, distributing, or facilitating the sale of Starlink products that provide any form of satellite access to Starlink services in South Africa.

The ban stems from a legal requirement under the Electronic Communications Act, which requires historically disadvantaged groups that were oppressed during the colonial and apartheid eras to own 30% of a company before it can obtain the necessary telecommunications licenses to provide broadband services locally.
Elon Musk's company has reportedly been unable to meet this regulatory requirement, and as a result, the use of Starlink terminals in South Africa has been declared illegal.
Starlink, SpaceX, Elon Musk  - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 14.04.2024
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In addition to South Africa, Starlink faces regulatory challenges in several other countries on the continent.
In February, the Botswana Communications Authority stated that Starlink's application to operate in the southern African country had been rejected because the company had not provided all the necessary information.
In addition, Ghana's National Communications Authority announced last December that Starlink was operating illegally in the country and advised the public not to use or supply the company's equipment.
To date, eight African countries have issued licenses for Starlink terminals to operate in their territories: Benin, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Nigeria, Rwanda, Eswatini, and Zambia.