By Andy Sambidge
Tata Communications inks agreements with telecom firms to build new undersea system.
Indian telecoms services firm Tata Communications has signed agreements with key operators in the Gulf to build a new undersea cable system for the region.
The state-of-the-art cable system will connect the Gulf region directly to the world's major business hubs and city centres through the Global Network, improving connectivity.
Qatar, Bahrain, Oman, Saudi Arabia and UAE will be connected to TGN Gulf Cable in the initial Phase. The second phase will see other countries in the Gulf added to the network.
The partners will be Bahrain Internet Exchange in Bahrain, Nawras of Oman, Qatar Telecom of Qatar, Mobily of Saudi Arabia and Etisalat of the UAE, Tata said in a statement.
Vinod Kumar, president and COO of Tata Communications, said: "Each of these partnerships will create mutual benefits that will multiply steadily as companies in the Middle East expand out to the rest of the world and as global MNCs seek connectivity to expand their operations to this fast growing region."
The total length of the cable system within the Gulf region will stretch some 4,469 kilometres, reaching from Mumbai through to Oman and onto Kuwait.
Dr Nasser Marafih, CEO, Qtel, said: “Qtel is delighted to announce this agreement with Tata Communications, which will bring a new global, and much needed, resilient submarine cable to Qatar. The enhanced capacity provided by this cabling solution will help ensure rapid growth of broadband services across Qatar.”
Building and installing the global submarine cable will take about 22 months.
Through the TGN-Gulf Cable System, people in the GCC region will have access to new, high-speed global routing that will encourage expansion in broadband penetration, internet usage and enterprise applications, and can look forward to faster and more reliable bandwidth.
Hope etisalat cut its broadband rates after that.