Construction of undersea fiber optic system linking Asia-Pacific countries commences

Leading telecommunication company Philippine Long Distance Telephone (PLDT) Co. announced recently that it has begun part of the construction of the Asia Sub-Marine Cable Express (ASE) which is aimed at increasing Internet connection speeds in countries across the Asia-Pacific. 

The $300-million multinational submarine fiber optic system is good news for BPO firms, call centers, banks, small and medium enterprises and other companies that rely on the Internet for their business. 

In a press statement, PLDT Network Services Assurance senior vice president George N. Lim said that the ASE system will initially link Japan, Philippines, Hong Kong and Singapore through fiber optic cable that spans 7,200 km.

He added that the system is also expected to create better Internet connection between the Philippines and Malaysia. The succeeding phases will see vastly improved Internet connections with and among Vietnam, Thailand and China. ASE will also link up with other major cable systems in the U.S., Middle East, Europe and more countries in Asia. 
In the press statement from PLDT, Lim added that the project is a future-ready network that can potentially supply more than 15 terabits per second capacity, initially using 40 gigabits per second wavelength technology and, in the future, 100 gigabits per second wavelength capability. 

Cable laying work commenced with a ceremony held recently in Daet, Camarines Norte, the site of the telecomm giant’s cable landing station. PLDT said in the press statement that they expect the project, targeted for completion on Q3 of 2012, to more than double the current capacity of their international bandwidth. 

The marine fiber optic system is a joint project of PLDT, StarHub of Singapore, NTTCom of Japan, NEC Corp. and Fujitsu Ltd. 


– The Business Inquirer, November 16th, 2011