Agreement signed for Samoa’s new Tui-Samoa Cable

joyetter@samoanews.com

Apia, SAMOA — Samoa’s new Tui-Samoa Cable will span more than 900 miles connecting Samoa to Fiji with branching units to Wallis & Futuna and Vanua Levu, Fiji, which is meant to enhance fast, reliable and affordable internet services across the region. This was made known during the agreement signing last Friday (Samoa Time).

Last month the Samoa Submarine Cable Company Limited (SSCC) and Alcatel-Lucent Submarine Networks, part of Nokia, signed a turnkey contract to roll out a new 900+ mile submarine cable system named Tui-Samoa Cable, linking Apia, Samoa, to Suva, Fiji. This week the Territory of Wallis & Futuna Islands and the island of Vanua Levu (Fiji) as part of the Tui-Samoa submarine cable system came together to sign the agreement to make it official.

Tui-Samoa Cable will deliver up to 8 terabits-per-second (Tbit/s) capacity using 100 Gbit/s transmission technology. Samoa’s Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi who was the keynote speaker stated that Tui Cable will help Samoa in so many ways.

“Tui-Samoa Cable will help improve the lives of ordinary Samoan people; it will provide school children in rural schools the opportunity to access a whole new world of information and access online education, businesses will be able to dramatically increase their customer base and aggressively market their goods and services online to the world and sell ‘Made in Samoa’. Government will also leverage the improved connectivity to speed up its eGovernment program and improve service delivery to our people.

“The ‘Strategy for the Development of Samoa’ (SDS) sets out government’s vision to help improve the lives of our people, and Tui-Samoa Cable is one of the key government enablers that will help us achieve that goal.”

He thanked all the development partners, the Asian Development Bank, the World Bank and the Australian Government for their extraordinary support of the Samoa Connectivity Project — Afamasaga Rico Tupai and members of the Samoa Connectivity Project and SSCC’s equity investors and directors. He also put up a challenge for the Samoa submarine cable company to deliver on its promise to provide fast, reliable and affordable Internet not only for Samoa but also for the partners from Wallis & Futuna and Vanua Levu.

 SSCC Chairman Pepe Fia'ailetoa Christian Fruean said the “Samoa Submarine Cable Company is committed to delivering fast, reliable and affordable internet services as a basic right for all Samoan people; we are also pleased to extend that opportunity to the people of Wallis & Futuna and Vanua Levu. Information is power and SSCC is pleased to be the means to empower rural and developing communities by providing them access to information and services that will help improve their people’s lives and also accelerate ICT development and growth in the region.”

Vice President Sales & Marketing, of Alcatel-Lucent Submarine Networks, Paul Gabla also had the opportunity to speak where he noted that the continued need for broadband access is driving new projects in the Asia-Pacific region. “We are pleased to work with SSCC in helping them enhance broadband capacity and connectivity for Wallis & Futuna and also Vanua Levu, institutions and businesses by making our expertise and knowledge of the Pacific area available.”

SSCC is a private company registered in Apia Samoa, which will build, manage and operate the Tui-Samoa submarine cable between Apia Samoa and Suva Fiji on behalf of the Government of Samoa; the main trunk will support branching units to Wallis & Futuna and Vanua Levu, Fiji.

SSCC will operate a Cooperative Sustainable Wholesale Model (CSWM) with the mandate to deliver fast, reliable and affordable Internet services to stimulate ICT innovation and development as an enabler of economic growth and social prosperity for the people of Samoa.

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