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April 27, 2007
NEW YORK -- Major telecommunications industry leaders today signed an agreement to build the first high-bandwidth optical fiber submarine cable system from Southeast Asia direct to the United States. Known as the Asia-America Gateway (AAG) cable system, the system is expected to cost approximately US$500 million.
This cable project is spearheaded by 17 parties, including AT&T Inc, Bhartic, BT Global Network Services, CAT Telecom, ETPI, PCP Company Limited, PLDT, PT Indosat, StarHub, Telekom Malaysia, TELKOM Indonesia, Telstra, the Government of Brunei Darussalam, TNZL, Saigon Postel, Viettel and the Vietnam Posts and Telecommunications Group (VNPT).
The supply contract for the construction of the AAG was also signed today between the AAG and the consortium of Alcatel-Lucent and NEC in Kuala Lumpur.
Alcatel-Lucent and NEC will design, manufacture, install, integrate and commision the system on a turnkey basis.
The 20,000km long AAG will connect Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Brunei Darussalam, Vietnam, Hong Kong SAR, the Philippines, Guam, Hawaii and the US West Coast. Besides serving these countries/regions, the cable system will also provide seamless interconnection with other major cable systems connecting Europe, Australia, other parts and Asia and Africa.
The AAG is expected to carry commercial traffic by 4th quarter of 2008.
The first direct Terabit-scale submarine cable network between Southeast Asia and North America is a historic landmark in the development of telecommunications between the two regions.
The AAG is designed to provide 1.92 Terabit/s using DWDM technology to provide upgradeable, future proof transmission facilities that support Internet and e-commerce.
The AAG is expected to meet the forecasted explosive growth in bandwidth requirements for new and revolutionary broadband applications such as IP, video, data, and other multimedia services. With such design, the AAG is able to support about 130,000 simultaneous high-definition TV (HDTV) signals.
The birth of the AAG will revolutionise high-bandwidth delivery between Asia and the US. The AAG, designed for broadband traffic, will provide much-needed diversity in traditional routes to the US and ensure alternate routes, expanded capacity and high levels of services during potential disasters.
The AAG, with its large bandwidth and high quality transmission technology, will help meet the present and future burgeoning growth in telecommunications traffic.
Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU)
AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T)
Vietnam Posts and Telecommunications Corp.
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