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Huawei Wins CANTV Deal

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Venezuelan national carrier Compania Anonima Nacional Telefonos de Venezuela (CANTV) has handed a national optical network upgrade to Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd.

In a deal valued at $6 million, the Chinese vendor is to provide DWDM gear that will boost the capacity of CANTV's 2,600-kilometer long distance fiber network from 2.5 Gbit/s to 160 Gbit/s.

In a statement issued this morning, CANTV, which is 28.5 percent owned by Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ), said it chose Huawei because of its experience with similar projects in Latin America (see Huawei Wins Optical Switch Contracts and Huawei Wins Brazil Contract).

Work on the upgrade will start in the first quarter of 2005, says the operator.

Earlier this year, Venezuela's president Hugo Chavez announced a rival, state-funded long-distance operator to challenge CANTV (see Venezuela Plans New Fiber Rollout).

CANTV is the leading Venezuelan operator with 2.9 million fixed line, 2.7 million mobile, and 325,000 Internet access customers.

— Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor, Light Reading

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