RIL, Vodafone, others tie up to construct undersea cable

RIL, Vodafone, others tie up to construct undersea cable New Delhi: A consortium of global telecom majors, including Reliance Jio Infocomm and Vodafone, on Tuesday signed an agreement for constructing the Bay of Bengal Gateway submarine cable system that will link Malaysia and Singapore to the Middle East with connections in India and Sri Lanka.

The cable system is likely to carry commercial traffic by the end of 2014.

"...Consortium members -- Telekom Malaysia Berhad (Malaysia), Vodafone Group (UK), Omantel (Oman), Etisalat (UAE), Reliance Jio Infocomm (India) and Dialog Axiata (Sri Lanka) -- signed the construction and maintenance agreement and the supply contract for BBG (Bay of Bengal Gateway) in Kuala Lumpur today," Reliance Industries said in a statement.

Reliance Jio Infocomm is the tower arm of Reliance Industries.

The BBG submarine cable system, spanning around 8,000 km, will link Malaysia (through Penang) and Singapore to the Middle East (Oman and United Arab Emirates) with connections reaching out to India (Mumbai and Chennai) and Sri Lanka, it added.

"The construction of BBG is planned not only to provide connectivity between South East Asia, South Asia and the Middle East but also to Europe, Africa and to the far East Asia through interconnections with other existing and newly built cable systems landing in India, Middle East and far East Asia," it said.

The statement added that BBG will serve as an opportunity for business growth as it will help supporting current and future high capacity requirements from the surrounding areas of the region.

"The BBG cable system is designed to provide upgradable and transmission facilities by adopting the state-of-the-art 100 Gbps technology," it added.

PTI