Gulf Bridge International (GBI), the Middle East's first privately-owned submarine cable operator, along with its partner, Vodafone Qatar, announced the landing of its new cable at Vodafone's international cable landing station just north of Doha.
Launching later this year, the GBI cable system is a high-capacity, fiber optic cable that will connect all the countries of the Gulf region to each other and provide onward connectivity to Europe, Africa and Asia. The system will provide an alternative connection from Qatar to the outside world, and significantly increase Qatar's international call and data capacity. The cable landing near Doha is one of ten planned cable landings around the Gulf region, through which GBI will offer the most comprehensive geographic reach of any subsea network in the region.
Commenting on this achievement, Mr. Ahmed Mekky, Board Member and CEO of GBI said: "GBI is pleased to be working with Vodafone to establish an additional landing station in Qatar. This cable landing is the first of two we will have in Qatar and keeps us well on track to launch our services later this year", Mr. Mekky continued. "Qatar is currently experiencing incredible economic growth and this is driving a significant increase in international traffic. This new connection will be able to support forecast future growth and provide greater diversity."
Over the coming months, the cable ship, Responder, will continue to install the GBI cable system, which is configured as a self-healing ring within the Gulf. The GBI cable system deploys several state-of-the-art technologies, such as new dual-stage repeaters and wavelength monitoring units.
Vodafone Qatar's Acting CEO, John Tombleson, welcomed the event as marking a milestone for both Vodafone and for Qatar.
"The arrival of the GBI system in Qatar today marks an exciting new stage of national economic growth and growth in competition in the Qatar telecommunications market," said Mr. Tombleson. "The country has already had a taste of competition with the arrival of Vodafone's mobile services in 2009 and now, using GBI to connect to the world, Vodafone is getting ready to bring competition to fixed services, helping us make a world of difference for all the people of Qatar."