Nortel to Build Chinese Backbone

BEIJING -- The Information and Network Center (INC) of China's State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT) has signed an estimated US$10 million contract with Nortel Networks (NYSE:NT)(TSE:NT.) for deployment of what is projected to be the longest optical backbone system in the country's broadcasting industry. Expected to span nearly 3,000-kilometers when completed, this high-speed, high capacity optical network will carry radio, television and other data services from Beijing via Wuhan to Guangzhou. It will be the first phase of a planned 30,000-kilometer national and provincial fiber optic radio and television transmission backbone.

"This optical backbone, as well as the Beijing-Shanghai-Guangzhou backbone, is positioning SARFT for the future -- underpinning our national radio and television transmission network, and supporting a broad range of commercial services for the new corporation we and our partners intend to establish shortly," said Chen Xiaoning, director of the Internet and Network Center, SARFT. "We view this contract as the beginning of what we hope will be a long-term relationship with Nortel Networks as we work together to leverage the power of the high-performance broadband network to deliver significant benefits to China's broadcasting and communications industries."

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