du,the integrated telecom operator in the UAE announced that it has signed a construction and maintenance agreement (C&MA) to build the first direct, high-bandwidth optical-fiber submarine cable system from the United Kingdom to India.
The EIG cable system, targeted to be operational in second quarter of 2010, is a 15,000 kilometer (9,000 mile) system that will connect 13 countries and three continents. Landings are planned in the United Kingdom, Portugal, Gibraltar, Morocco, Monaco, France, Libya, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Djibouti, Oman, United Arab Emirates and India.
Global operators that are part of the consortium are AT&T; Bharti Airtel BT; C&W; Djibouti Telecom; Gibtelecom; IAM; Libyan Post, Telecom, and Information Technology Company; Mauritius Telecom; MTN Group Ltd; Omantel; PT Comunicações, S.A.; Saudi Telecom Company; Telecom Egypt; Telkom SA Ltd and Verizon Business.
Commenting on the benefits of the international partnership, Andrew Grenville, EVP International & wholesale, said: “This next generation fiber-optic cable agreement underscores our commitment to becoming the telecom partner of choice. There is a world-wide growing demand for international capacity and EIG will meet the high bandwidth requirement and provide diversity for our traffic to Europe and the Indian subcontinent which are key destinations for our voice and data traffic.”