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

21 Feb 2014

Bangladesh’s Ministry of Posts, Telecommunications & Information Technology and Bangladesh Submarine Cable Company Limited (BSCCL) are expected to sign a contract formalising their participation in the planned SEA-ME-WE-5 submarine cable system next month, the Daily Star reports. The landing of a cable in Kuakata in Patuakhali district is expected in the first quarter of 2016, while loans from the Islamic Development Bank will be used to fund the construction of the cable, in which Bangladesh will invest a total of USD70 million. The contract will be signed in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on 7 March.

Centurion-based Dark Fibre Africa (DFA) is set to acquire South Africa-based fibre solutions provider CONDUCT as it looks to overcome the last mile barrier and provide South African enterprises with easy access to fibre connectivity. DFA said its last mile strategy will be ‘significantly enhanced’ through the acquisition, allowing it to speed up the delivery of fibre connectivity to its customers. The company, through its internet service provider (ISP) partner network, aims to connect up to 10,000 business customers to its fibre network by March 2015. DFA expects the acquisition to be completed by the end of March, pending the necessary approvals.

Submarine cable operator SEACOM has confirmed its intention to make extensive investments in terrestrial backhaul, additional subsea connectivity and its pan-African IP/MPLS network. SEACOM’s management team has noted said that it has upgraded its South African backhaul networks, linking its west and east coast cable assets through the activation of multiple wavelengths between Johannesburg and Cape Town, coupled with upgrades of the network platforms that support its services to major cable interconnection hubs in Yzterfontein and Mtunzini. The group has also acquired additional west coast subsea capacity to meet demand from both its transmission and IP/MPLS customers.

Australia’s largest submarine cable operators have unanimously backed proposed changes to cable protection laws currently being considered by the Senate. Southern Cross Cables, Telstra, SingTel Optus, Australia-Japan Cable (AJC) and Basslink noted in a joint submission to a Senate inquiry that proposed legal changes broadly reflected alterations they had collectively sought since early 2011. The proposed changes include harmonising Australia’s cable protection regime with international rules, protecting domestic subsea routes in addition to international links, and simplifying permit application processes. They also aim to give security agencies the power to assess new subsea projects and veto any that are deemed counter to Australia’s national interests.

Vodafone New Zealand and network specialist Ciena Corporation have completed a successful field trial of 400Gbps data transmission over an existing optical link carrying live network traffic. The trial was conducted over a 200km route between data centres at Auckland’s North Shore and Hamilton. Previously, in September last year, Vodafone deployed a 100Gbps network using Ciena’s WaveLogic 3 technology, connecting New Zealand’s major metro areas – Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

Telecoms network exchange Epsilon Telecommunications has entered into an agreement with TransIndonesia Network, an Indonesian telecommunications provider dedicated to domestic wholesale long-haul, to deliver international connectivity across Asia, Europe and the Americas. With this agreement, Epsilon is providing a virtual point-of-presence (ePoP) and cross connect services in Singapore. Epsilon claims to be pre-connected with more than 500+ network operators globally, and this agreement extends its presence in Indonesia. TransIndonesia Network owns and operates long haul telecoms infrastructure in Java and Sumatra and also provides inter-city and inner-city connectivity with POPs in 68 cities across the two aforementioned islands.

Danish operator TDC will install a point of presence (PoP) at Interxion’s data centre in Hilversum, Netherlands as part of its European expansion, it has been confirmed. TDC reportedly selected Interxion’s Hilversum data centre for its strategic location, between European connectivity hubs such as Amsterdam, Frankfurt and Hamburg.

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