Cable compendium: a guide to the week’s submarine and terrestrial developments

29 Nov 2013

Vanuatu-based Interchange has announced that Alcatel-Lucent’s Subsea Networks Division has begun laying its 1,259km fibre-optic submarine cable between Port Vila, Vanuatu and Suva, Fiji. The system will link directly into the high capacity Southern Cross cable between Sydney and Hawaii. Previously, in June this year Interchange submitted a licence application with the Telecommunications Commission of Solomon Islands (TCSI), with a view to connecting its network to the Solomons Oceanic Cable Company (SOCC) network, which is expected to be operational in 2014.

Telstra Global has announced that it will deliver additional capacity on the UNITY cable route by adding 100Gbps technology. UNITY is a key Trans-Pacific route for Telstra Global to service customers in and out of the Asia Pacific region, and will form one of the core routes for its transmission and IP backbone worldwide.

T-Hrvatski Telekom (THT) of Croatia has announced a partnership agreement with Deutsche Telekom (DT) for international voice wholesale traffic, which will take effect on 1 January 2014, and seeks to exploit synergies arising from DT’s position in that market. The partnership agreement includes the aggregation of international voice trading as well as commercial and technical traffic routing under the responsibility of DT and it will enable further efficiency improvements at T-HT, resulting from a reduction in operating expenses.

UK telecoms and pay-TV giant Sky has selected Colt Technology Services as one of its carrier partners, for the delivery of global call termination services. Colt began carrying voice traffic for Sky in May 2013 and is today responsible for the delivery of millions of minutes per month.

According to Egypt’s Ministry of Communication and Information Technology the country’s new northern submarine cable route was activated last weekend, protecting the company against any outages on the southern route. The new route, constructed by Telecom Egypt (TE), starts in Abu Talat, Alexandria, and protects cables that cross the country from Asia to Europe and vice versa via the Zafarana–Abu Talat route.

BT Global Services has announced a new phase of investments covering Turkey, the Asia Pacific, and the Middle East and Africa (AMEA) regions, with the objective of accelerating its expansion in high growth markets. By hiring more people in the region and launching more competitive capabilities across a larger number of countries BT hopes to capture new opportunities in a total AMEA market evaluated at around GBP32 billion (USD52.2 billion).

South Africa’s Convergence Partners has launched its Convergence Partners Communications Infrastructure Fund (CPCIF), which it describes as ‘the only infrastructure fund that is dedicated purely to the ICT sector in Africa’. With a first close of USD145 million, it is one of the largest African based infrastructure funds, notwithstanding its single sector focus. Convergence has previously played a leading role in landmark African ICT infrastructure investments, such as SEACOM, the first undersea fibre system serving East Africa.

Telecom Namibia has signed an MPLS network interconnection agreement with Hong Kong-based PCCW Global to enhance its international network coverage and service offerings. The interconnection agreement will extend Telecom Namibia’s service coverage in global internet access, IPLC, Ethernet, and IP VPN to its overseas customers through PCCW Global’s MPLS network which covers more than 1,500 cities in 110 countries in Asia, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and the Americas. In related news, Telecom Namibia has unveiled a new suite of Global IP-MPLS VPN and Carrier Ethernet products.

Eurofiber and Numericable have unveiled a collaboration which will see them make their respective fibre-optic networks available to their combined business subscriber bases in Luxembourg, Belgium and the Netherlands.

Data centre and network provider SSE Telecoms has added another 25 points of presence (PoP) to its national infrastructure as part of an expansion that will see a further 29 come online in the next three months. Dubbed ‘Project Edge’, the firm’s 13,700km fibre network will have grown to a total of 234 PoPs covering 200,000 businesses, predominantly in cities and large towns across mainland UK. New locations will range from Bath and Bristol at one end of the country to Liverpool and Glasgow further north. Future PoPs will cover the lucrative economic core of London and the Thames Valley.