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Cheaper Internet Next Year

Sok Chan / Khmer Times Share:

A new submarine telecoms cable due for completion in early 2017 will strengthen existing internet networks, increase capacity and lower costs, according to the company installing the cable.
Yves Shaeffer, CEO of EZECOM, which owns Telcotech that is installing the Malaysia-Cambodia and Thailand (MCT) submarine cable, said at a press conference yesterday that the cable will be a boost to Cambodian and regional internet capabilities.
“Under the MCT cable, we will be able to bring the additional capacity and lead Cambodia to connect to the rest of the region and the world, since Cambodia is [geographically] at the center of Southeast Asia,” said Mr. Shaeffer.
“Since we have many projects in the near future regarding ICT [information and communication technology] projects and the education sector, the MCT cable here in Cambodia will provide fast speed internet effectively and we can support other projects to boost economic growth.”
The cable, which will connect Sihanoukville with Rayong in Thailand and Kuantan in Malaysia, will be 1,300 kilometers long.
Prakash Velayudhan, chief technology officer at Telcotech, explained that the project was presently 76 percent complete, and will allow traffic of speeds of up to 100 gigabits per second, with an overall capacity of at least 30 terabits per second.
He said that it will connect to the 20,000-kilometer-long Asia-America Gateway (AAG), which links the west coast of the US with Southeast Asia.
The project was initially due to be completed by the end of 2015, and then pushed back to December of this year, before the latest announcement of early next year, said Mr. Velayudhan, blaming the delays on “administration processes” that were beyond the company’s control.
“Now I can say that we have overcome of all these handle and we have cleared all the permits, manufacturing, technical qualifications of the project, and we are now at the final stages of the operation. The thing is clear now, and we can expect that in the first quarter of 2017 we will have the cable here,” Mr. Velayudhan stressed.
Moa Chakrya, chairman of the Telecommunication Regulator of Cambodia (TRC), said that Cambodia currently is only connected via landlines to neighboring countries, and the new submarine cable will both increase internet speeds, and lower costs.
“The MCT Cable will provide access to content very well,” he said.
He said that non-mobile internet usage in Cambodia is rather limited at present, and is found only in urban areas. He stressed that any technology that would boost connectivity for the rural population was beneficial for the country.
Regionally, there are six land-based cables, but rapid development has meant that this system is rapidly approaching capacity. Connections between mainland Asia and Asean are also limited, Mr. Chakrya said, and such submarine cables will enhance regional integration.

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