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PLDT eyes investment in new Philippines-US cable system

PhilStar Global logo PhilStar Global 27/03/2022 Richmond Mercurio

MANILA, Philippines — Fully integrated telco PLDT Inc. is preparing to invest in a new cable system linking the Philippines and the US to support the growing demand driven by global hyperscalers and the accelerated digital transformation across consumer and enterprise markets.

PLDT, in its annual report released last week, said it is prepared to invest in a new Philippines–US cable system.

“PLDT is also ready to invest in a new Philippines–US cable system to own fiber pairs and support hyperscale, enterprise and internet requirements,” the company said.

PLDT, which operates the country’s most extensive international submarine cable network, is set to expand further its international bandwidth capacity in the next two years, with the expected completion of three major international cable systems.

These projects are the Jupiter cable system, Asia Direct Cable (ADC), and the APRICOT cable system.

PLDT continues to work with major Asian carriers and OTT (over-the-top) players for the implementation of the Jupiter cable system to support the expected new fixed and mobile services requirements.

The project is estimated to be finished and ready for service by the second quarter.

Cable installation for the ADC, on the other hand, is in progress following completion of marine surveys, according to PLDT.

PLDT is set to own fiber pairs in ADC, which is targeted to be ready for service by next year.

Meanwhile, eyed to be fully operational in 2024 is the APRICOT cable system, a 12,000-kilometer long cable system that will have a design capacity of more than 190 Tbps connecting the Philippines to Japan, Singapore, Indonesia, Taiwan and Guam.

PLDT said new cable landing stations in Luzon and Mindanao would also be built as part of the submarine cable system to enhance network resiliency.

The telco giant is investing $80 million in the APRICOT cable system with acquisition on fiber pair basis.

Its investment on the ADC and Jupiter, meanwhile, amounted to $75 million and $136.7 million, respectively.

As of end 2021, PLDT has five international internet gateways to fortify the group’s infrastructure for internet and IP-based services, as well as connections of its fixed and wireless networks to content and internet services available from, and businesses connected to, the global internet.

It also maintains and operates three international cable landing stations in La Union and Batangas for international cables coming from the West Philippine Sea, and in Daet in the east for international cables coming from the Pacific Ocean.

The company said these international cable stations are connected to its three international transmission maintenance centers, including direct cable station to cable station interconnection, through an advance terrestrial fiber mesh network.

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