Colombia’s largest fixed line telco ETB and long-distance operator Orbitel have announced plans to jointly invest a total of around USD13 million in the build out of a fibre-optic ring in the country. The network has already been partially built by Internexa, which has installed around USD41 million of infrastructure. Once completed, it will cover 1,967km of land, connecting the cities of Medellin and Cartagena via Bucarmanga, Cucuta, Barranquilla, Sincelejo and Monteria. ETB and Orbitel will be responsible for the completion of the final 486km section of the ring, from Cartagena back to Medellin; they have not yet selected infrastructure suppliers. The two companies plan to use the network to support their basic domestic and international long distance services. The project is expected to be completed sometime in the second half of 2003.