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Africa: BRICs' undersea cable for faster connectivity


14 June 2012

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A new submarine cable system will connect the BRIC countries with the United States. The submarine cable project will play an important role in giving African countries access to BRIC countries and vice versa.

BRICS Cable is an initiative backed by strong technical partners to support the initiative of brics countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) and has recently unveiled a new submarine cable system that will connect these countries with the United States. This project will see a 34 000km cable going between these countries.

Speaking at the session titled 'Connecting the Developing World', Andrew Mthembu, Chairman of i3 Africa and Imphandze Investments - the two South African entities supporting the project - said that the BRICS Cable initiative was welcomed during talks held New Delhi, India, earlier this year.

"It is a strategic project for social and economic benefit to all BRICS countries," said Mthembu.

BRICS Cable will install a 2 fibre pair, 12.8 Terabit per-second capacity Fibre Optic cable system. It will interconnect, amongst others, with the WACS cable on the West coast of Africa, and the EASSY and SEACOM cables on the East coast of the continent. This will give the BRICS countries immediate access to 21 African countries and give those African countries access to the BRICS economies.

"We have been working very closely with government over the last 12 months, making sure that we propel the BRICS Cable project forward," said Mthembu.

Managing Director for Telkom, Mr. Casper Kondor Chihaka, highlighted problems South Africa could face if undersea cabling is not carried out.

"If the large amount of submarine cable delivered between 2009 and 2012 to the sub-Saharan continent does not find ways to off load the capacity to the end users it will result in over supply and result in pressure on investments," warned Chihaka.

 
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