Philippines-based PLDT has announced plans to build two new international submarine cables. The digital services provider is, it says, responding to an anticipated boom in data usage in the country, requiring improved global cabling capacity.
Two new international cable systems, linking the Philippines in the east and west, will be added to the one currently being built in the Transpacific region. The eastern link, ready for operation in 2022, will connect Davao and Baler to Singapore and Japan via Indonesia.
The western link, set for launch in 2023, will have a cable landing system in Batangas, which will be linked to Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Vietnam and Thailand. It will also have branches in Indonesia and Cambodia.
The 14,000-kilometre-long Transpacific cable, already under way, is called Jupiter. It will, says PLDT, deliver a capacity of more than 60Tbps from the Philippines to Japan and the US. It will be ready for service early next year.
At the moment the additional projects are still on the drawing board; the construction and maintenance agreement is due to be signed later this year. Nevertheless, PLDT has already indicated that it expects cable system technology advances will help to bring prices down, making the new ventures cheaper than their predecessors (the company has a network of 17 international cable systems).