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ETISALAT buys cable capacity

The Emirates Telecommunications Corporation (ETISALAT) has moved a step closer to its ambition of becoming a centre for Internet traffic after buying STM-1 level capacity on the Flag Telecom cable between the United Arab Emirates and Japan.

The Emirates Telecommunications Corporation (ETISALAT) has moved a step closer to its ambition of becoming a centre for Internet traffic after buying STM-1 level capacity on the Flag Telecom cable between the United Arab Emirates and Japan.

The 155 Mbit/s connection will be used to meet the rapidly increasing needs of ETISALAT’s customers for advanced Internet access.

“We have long stated our aim of becoming a regional hub for Internet traffic,” said Ali Salim Al Owais, president and CEO of ETISALAT.

“The additional capacity allows us not only to keep pace with internet demand from our customers, but provides additional flexibility as we can now access the United States, westwards or eastwards.” he added.

Additional Requirement

Walid Irshaid, Flag’s vice president for the Middle East and Africa, is equally happy with the multi-million dollar contract.

“We are delighted to have met this additional requirement,” he said. “ETISALAT was a founding customer on the Flag Telecom cable network and is a key partner in the region.”

Flag and ETISALAT jointly manage the Fujairah landing station for the Europe-Asia cable.

Last month Jordan Telecommunications announced that it was buying 45 Mbit/s of broadband capacity on Flag’s link between Aqaba and New York. This was also in response to a rise in demand for Internet access.

Flag’s US $1.6bn Europe-Asia cable, launched in November 1997, will form a key part of a 100,000km global network, due to be in place by 2003.

The Europe-America branch, Flag Atlantic -1, is currently under construction. When completed early next year it will be the world’s first transoceanic terabit cable. The trans-Pacific section should be ready by 2002.

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