True Internet Gateway, part of Thai full-service telco True Corp, plans to invest THB1.4 billion (USD41 million) in a proposed joint project to build a new submarine cable link between Thailand and the US, which would end the monopoly of state-run CAT Telecom in the undersea cable market, reports the Bangkok Post. Anothai Rattanakul, general manager of True Internet Gateway, said the company was in preliminary talks with CAT and its sister telco TOT, cellcos AIS and DTAC, and Jasmine International over the joint venture proposal, and hoped that a deal could be reached within six months. Cable-laying work would take between 18 months and two years, and the network could be operational by the end of 2010. The cable would interconnect directly with a US cable network, with the aims of doubling Thailand’s international internet bandwidth capacity, reducing wholesale gateway fees by around 30% and allowing faster end-user speeds. True also plans to invest an additional THB100 million to increase its bandwidth capacity from 7Gbps to 8.3Gbps next year. Its general manager said that international internet gateway (IIG) traffic in Thailand was expected to rise to 50Gbps in 2009, up from an expected 27Gbps this year, fuelled mainly by the liberalisation of the IIG sector a year ago, whilst the overall value of the IIG market would increase from around THB3 billion this year to THB5 billion in 2009.