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Alcatel Submarine Networks to provide cable for revised Arctic cable initiative

1/31/2022 – Finnish network supplier Cinia and North American telecom company Far North Digital have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to build a subsea fiber optic cable for internet and data transport in the Arctic, with Alcatel Submarine Networks chosen as the supplier for the 14,000 km of cable.

A report in Hugh North News outlined the following backdrop to the project, which seeks to reduce the optic distance between Asia and Europe and minimize delays in data traffic. Last March, Finnish Cinia had announced that it would work with North Norwegian company Bredbåndsfylket AS and the Russian company Megafon on the project, called Arctic Connect. The goal was to lay a cable via Kirkenes, Norway and the Northeast Passage along the Russian Arctic. However, in May, the project was shelved due to delays in negotiations, and now Cinia is working on the project with new partners and no Russian participation.

The new plan is for the cable to run from Japan through the Northwest Passage to Europe, with side-cables touching land in Finland, Ireland and Troms County, Norway. It is scheduled for completion by the end of 2025.

Far North Digital Technical Director Guy Houser said that the new cable will increase speed and improve security for telecommunications between countries in the Arctic. Japan is the main hub for the new cable.

Professor Jun Murai at Keio University, a special advisor to the Japanese Cabinet, said in a press release that the Arctic connection between Japan and North Europe has long been of interest to Japan and the company Cinia, as diversity of international connections is crucial for Japan. “Japanese Prime Minister Kishida has presented a plan to build new landing points around the various islands where the cable will run. My long-term plan about Hokkaido being a natural gateway to the North and East is beginning to come true,” he said.

Alcatel Submarine Networks will provide project design and installation. The costs related to production, laying down the cable, and landings, is estimated to be nearly US$1 billion.

Read 910 times Last modified on February 1, 2022