Tunisia signals its digital independence with a new subsea cable linking
Posted on 21.04.2009 - 13:00 EDT in SUBSEA TELECOMS NEWS by Rons_ROV_Links
Tunisie Telecom has signed a contract with Interoute to establish a subsea cable linking North Africa to Interoute's pan-European fibre optic network. The cable, due to land in Sicily in October, gives Tunisia ownership over the flow of its internet traffic and removes the reliance on consortium owned subsea cables such as SEAMEWE 4. By connecting to Interoute's advanced fibre optic network, Tunisie Telecom will have access to the independent operator's innovative services and competitive pricing model. This is crucial to keeping the incumbent carriers competitive and places Tunisie Telecom at the forefront of the continued broadband boom - Tunisian IP traffic tripled in 2008.
The venture will see a 170km unrepeated fibre optic cable run from Kelibia, Tunisia, to Interoute's landing station in Mazara del Vallo, Sicily. From Sicily the cable will connect to Interoute's pan-European fibre optic network providing a speed of light route to Paris and access to 24 networked countries. The new cable will offer 3.2 Tera-Bits Per Second of capacity, capable of streaming approximately 4,000,000 simultaneous youtube videos. On completion, this will be Interoute's seventh European landing station connecting sub sea systems into its pan European network.
Gareth Williams, CEO Interoute commented, "Interoute is proud to be part of the movement to support the growing North African market with high speed, high capacity connectivity. We have previously linked the UK and Scandinavia to our pan European network (via submarine cables in the North and Baltic seas) and the Balkan countries via a subsea cable to Greece for OTE Globe, and Malta with GO. This bold new project from Tunisia Telecom will ensure that nation's rapid broadband growth and developing tech industry will be supported for many years to come. This project also secures Tunisia's place as the leader in bridging North Africa's digital divide, bringing the region on-net to the European Union."
"In the past year repeated submarine cables outages in the Mediterranean have demonstrated the value of having multiple cables that offer diversity," said Alan Mauldin, Research Director, TeleGeography. "Tunisie Telecom's new cable, supported by Interoute's pan European fibre optic network, will provide the additional capacity and resiliency the country needs to meet the needs of Internet users and enterprises in the country."