Telecommunications gets fibre optic boost

KINGSTON, Jamaica: Prime Minister Bruce Golding has welcomed the landing of a 1,840 km, high speed fibre optic submarine cable linking Jamaica, Cuba and Venezuela.

The cable between Cuba and Jamaica is 234 km long and data quality is guaranteed by high powered laser signals in its optical equipment.

“This increase in bandwidth will have several benefits to Jamaica. These benefits include the further strengthening of our telecommunication infrastructure through the creation of another facility for the movement of telecommunication traffic out of Jamaica; the opening up and expansion of business opportunities in the area of knowledge and business outsourcing services; improvement in the business to business relationship among Cuba, Venezuela and Jamaica,” Golding wrote in a statement delivered by Minister of State in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Marlene Malahoo Forte, at the of the cable landing ceremony last week.

“Importantly, the project will provide yet another opportunity to build redundancies in the telecommunications infrastructure and, most importantly, will increase job opportunities and facilitate more efficient ways of sharing knowledge.”

The cable is owned by Venezuelan Telecommunications Company, Telecommuniciones Gran Caribe (TGC), a Cuban/Venezuelan joint venture established to invest in and operate the international telecommunications system ALBA 1. The project will allow Cuba to benefit from cheaper, faster access to the Internet and other telecommunications technologies. That country has access to telecommunications from satellites orbiting the earth.

Venezuelan minister with responsibility for science technology and intermediate industries, Ricardo Menendez, said the arrival of the cable represented a mutual relationship for all partners.

Vice President of TGC, Waldo Reboredoarroyo, said the project, which took just over one year to be executed, was ahead of schedule as it benefited from “goodwill, understanding and co-operation of many parties involved”.

He said that the cables, with additional equipment, may deliver speeds of up to 642 gigabytes per second. There is an underwater provision to expand the service to the Dominican Republic and also to Haiti.

Reboredoarroyo gave his company’s commitment to further advances.

“We also wish to express our commitment to continue working together with you to envision and materialize ways in which this bandwidth capacity will further develop our national telecommunications infrastructures, to modestly contribute to the expansion of our IT and services industries, increase cultural exchange for the growth of our economies to the benefit of our peoples,” he said.

LIME is the strategic landing partner for the TGC cable in Jamaica. Chief Executive Officer Christopher Dehring said that the company was pleased to be at the centre of increasing fibre optic capacity in the Caribbean. He noted that LIME recently handled the East to West cable linking Jamaica to the Dominican Republic and British Virgin Islands – a US$35 million project.

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