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By 7 September 2010 | Categories: news

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Submarine cable infrastructure company Alcatel-Lucent says it has been selected by eFive Telecoms, a South African telecommunications company, to build a new submarine cable network linking the west coast of Africa to South America. The system will comprise two trunks, the first one connecting South Africa to Angola and Nigeria, and the second trunk linking Angola to Brazil.
 
This is a significant development for South African telecoms, which is already benefiting from additional international bandwidth capacity which was introduced to the country via the SEACOM and Eassy submarine cable systems in the last year. 
 
“We believe that high-growth areas such as the African continent require the development of new projects,” said Lawrence Mulaudzi, managing director of eFive Telecoms. “The planned submarine network will also provide cable route diversity to South America, making the most economical and operational sense in the current landscape.”
 
Alcatel-Lucent will be in charge of the project end-to-end including the system design, manufacturing, installation, and commissioning. The system will also be maintained by Alcatel-Lucent through its Atlantic Private Maintenance Agreement (APMA), which currently covers over 100 000 km of submarine cable infrastructure from the west coast of Africa to the Caribbean and as far north as Greenland. 
 
“Growth in African Internet and mobile telephony is driving service providers’ demand for more connectivity options to ensure higher reliability, as well as increased widespread access to bandwidth. This project will further position Africa as a major hub for broadband connectivity,” said Philippe Dumont, head of Alcatel-Lucent’s submarine network activity.
 
With the incoming WACS and ACE submarine cable systems due to be introduced to the West Coast of Africa within the next two years, South Africa should be swimming in a veritable ocean of international bandwidth capacity by late 2012. 
 
This should give local operators more choice with regards to international connectivity options and should lower the cost of bandwidth.

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