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Bharti to set up US-Asia undersea cable

February 26, 2008 13:05 IST

Telecom giant Bharti Airtel on Monday said it would set up a new undersea cable linking the United States with Asia in partnership with five global telecom firms.

The undersea cable -- Unity -- would entail an investment of $ 300 million and would address broadband demand by providing capacity to sustain the growth in data and Internet traffic between Asia and the US, Bharti said in a statement.

Besides Bharti, the consortium includes the US' Internet search company Google, Japan's telecom company KDDI Corp, Malaysia's Global Transit Ltd, Singapore's Pancet and Singtel.

The construction would begin immediately and would be ready for commercial use in the first quarter of 2010. The consortium has selected NEC Corporation and Tyco Telecommunications to construct and install the system.

Bharti already has two international landing stations in Chennai that connects two submarine cable systems-i2i to Singapore and SEA-ME-WE to Singapore and Europe.

"This investment is in line with our strategy to extend our international footprint across the globe to provide seamless connectivity to our customers through partnerships with leading global companies. The Unity cable would address the demand for increased bandwidth between Asia and the US as more and more services migrate to an online environment," Airtel Enterprise Services President David Nishball said.

This partnership would also provide alternate routes to meet the demands of our customers for increased levels of network resiliency and redundancy, he added.

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