Source: Total Telecom
Countries aim to cut costs with $100 million plan to build 2,000 kilometres of new cable.
Brazil, Colombia, Argentina, Chile and other countries in South America are proposing building fiber-optic links between their networks to cut costs and save time, Brazilian communications minister Paulo Bernardo said Tuesday.
The countries in the region already have their own fiber-optic networks, and they could be linked together with the construction of as few as 2000 kilometers of new cable, mostly along existing rights-of-way, Bernardo said at a press conference.
The connections could be built in about two years, at a cost of about $100 million, he told reporters. Right now most of the connections between countries in the region go via the U.S., adding to the cost and to the time of calls and data transmissions.
As much as 85% of Internet traffic in South America passes through Miami, the Inter-American Development Bank said in a recent report, citing the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean.
By linking their networks together, and building greater capacity to other parts of the world, the countries of South America can expand their local networks, offering high-speed connections to more people and at a lower price, the IADB report said.
Brazil also wants to add two new undersea fiber-optic cables, one to the U.S. and one to Europe. The cable to the U.S. would cost between $280 million and $300 million, Bernardo said, and will be built with enough excess capacity for other countries in the region to use as well.
The other undersea cable might go directly from Brazil to Europe, or it might go to Cape Verde, and there link up with a cable from Angola. The second option would give African countries a more direct link to the U.S., Bernardo said.