8 Mar 2012
Brazilian state-controlled telecoms group Telecomunicacoes Brasileiras (Telebras) has provided details of a new submarine cable project designed to connect the Latin American country to the US, Europe, Africa and the South American Atlantic coast. The proposed subsea cable system will comprise five sections in total, according to Telebras’ innovation and technology manager, Paulo Eduardo Kapp, speaking to BNamericas on the sidelines of Capacity Latam, in Sao Paulo. Kapp is quoted as saying the first section will link Ceara state capital Fortaleza to the US, with a spur reaching Colombia; a second section will connect Fortaleza and Europe; a third cable will originate in Fortaleza and connect to Africa via the Angolan capital Luanda, with a leg connecting the Brazilian archipelago of Fernando de Noronha as well. A fourth section will run from Fortaleza to Santos, in Sao Paulo state, with a spur to Rio de Janeiro, and the final section will join Santos with the Uruguayan city of Maldonado and the Argentine municipality of Las Toninas. Although no timeframe has been given for the completion of each section, Kapp said the Fortaleza to US link will be delivered by 2014 – in time for the FIFA Football World Cup, which Brazil is hosting.
The Brazilian government is working with a shortlist of partners to finance and build the coastal cable, with Kapp noting that as a pre-requisite, the winning partner must be Brazilian. ‘The partner has to be 100% Brazilian, and it must associate with and be part of other companies and consortiums in the sub cable network project,’ Kapp said. Local press reports suggest that the government of Brazil is considering a memorandum of understanding with Brazil’s Odebrecht to form a joint venture on the mooted BRL2 billion (USD1.13 billion) cable project.