Could the Humboldt Cable put Chile on the digital map?

Could the Humboldt Cable put Chile on the digital map?

Two of the partners in what is described as the first subsea cable connecting Latin America with APAC and Oceania have issued a request for proposals (RFP) to begin construction of the estimated 15,000-kilometre Humboldt Cable.

The two companies are Desarrollo Pais, a state-run infrastructure fund majority owned by the Chilean Government, and H2 Cable, a subsidiary of Singapore-based BW Digital, itself an affiliate of global maritime conglomerate BW Group.

The Humboldt was originally announced in late 2021. It will provide end-to-end connectivity between Valparaiso, Chile, and Sydney, Australia, where it will also interconnect with cable systems across Asia. Additional branching stubs will allow for connection to other countries and territories, including Juan Fernandez and Easter Island, as well as New Zealand.

The partners in the enterprise say that the Humboldt Cable will be the most significant piece of subsea infrastructure connecting South America, paving the way for the deployment of essential data centres, AI and other data-driven technologies to help to put Chile on the digital map. Or as, Patricio Rey Sommer, CEO of Desarrollo País, puts it: “We have set an ambitious goal to transform Chile into a digital hub for Latin America.”

Desarrollo País and H2 Cable are now looking to partner with the world’s best suppliers for turnkey implementation of transoceanic submarine cable systems.

Technical definition of the route and schedules for execution of the project are being set. Desarrollo País and H2 Cable have asked that suppliers’ proposals be based on an ‘Open Cable System’ model.

International Connectivity Services Ltd, the service company of cable system operator the Hawaiki Group (now wholly owned by  leading global maritime company BW Digital), has been engaged to finalize the system design of the cable, launch the procurement process and engage with prospective anchor customers.


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