Construction starts on $250-M SEA-US cable system

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 31 2015 02:08 PM | Updated as of Mar 31 2015 10:08 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Construction on a $250 million submarine cable system that would directly connect Indonesia and the United States has begun.

The South-East Asia-United States (SEA-US) submarine cable system will link the five areas and territories of Manado in Indonesia, Davao in Southern Philippines; Piti in the territory of Guam; as well as Honolulu (on the island of Oahu), Hawaii; and Los Angeles, California in the continental U.S.

The landmark project is being undertaken by the SEA-US consortium, which consists of Globe Telecom, PT. Telekomunikasi Indonesia International (Telin), RAM Telecom International (RTI), Hawaiian Telcom, Teleguam Holdings (GTA), GTI Corporation (a member of the Globe Telecom group of companies) and Telkom USA.

Approximately 15,000 kilometers in length, the system has been designed and engineered to bypass earthquake prone areas in East Asia.

The cable system will provide an initial 20 terabit per second (Tb/s) capacity, with state-of-the-art 100 Gigabit per second (Gb/s) technology. This is expected to address the growing demand for bandwidth between Southeast Asia and North America.

"The SEA-US project will enable Globe to play a major role in providing superior connectivity for consumers and businesses in the Philippines to connect to the US. Our link-up with the SEA-US cable system will serve the exponential growth of mobile Internet use in our country, enabling the Filipino digital lifestyle and wonderful experience for our customers and businesses," Gil Genio, Globe Telecom executive vice president and COO, said.

Genio noted this project would also benefit the Philippines' outsourcing and offshoring industry, including major contact centers, business process outsourcing providers, global financial institutions which require large bandwidth.

Syarif Syarial Ahmad, president director of Indonesia's Telin, said the cable project represents "one of the biggest milestones for Indonesia’s rapid growth in communications.

"Our objective is now closer with SEA-US given that it is the first cable system with direct connection from Indonesia to USA, where most of the Internet’s content is sourced," he said.

NEC Corporation and NEC Corporation of America are the system suppliers for the project that is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2016.