Vietnam Posts and Telecommunications Group (VNPT) has partnered with Chinese vendor Huawei Technologies to deploy what it claims to be the world’s largest optical-layer Automatic Switch Optical Network (ASON) network, covering Hanoi and the country’s northern provinces. The next generation transmission technology will increase network stability, reduce operational costs and allow more flexibility in broadband services. Luong Manh Hoang, deputy general manager of Vietnam National Telecoms (VTN), the transmission networks arm of the incumbent, said: ’This is a significant upgrade to the backbone network of VNPT. We are delighted that Huawei deployed such a large and complicated network in only eight months.’ According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms database, VNPT announced in March 2009 plans to invest USD1 billion to upgrade its broadband networks and expand its international internet bandwidth during the year. Under the incumbent’s upgrade plan, its Vietnam Data Communications (VDC) division will make available two additional STM-16 optical links at 2.5Gbps to the US, doubling its international internet bandwidth.