IOX Cable System is progressing fast
Innovative 52tbps capacity cable will be the first open access cable system in the India and SAARC region
How is the 8,850km IOX Cable system developing?
The IOX project is on schedule and is progressing fast. The last one year has been very hectic and busy for us. We finalized our supplier in the middle of the year after a lot of deliberations and negotiations and got on board our first anchor tenant later in the year. Last month we went CIF and the work for the cable has started. We are in line to give Mauritius its third cable by 2019.
When will the system, which is being built by Alcatel Submarine Networks (ASN), scheduled to go live and how will it benefit the carrier community?
The work has already started, and the cable will be in service by Q4 2019. This is our target and as we speak we are in line to meet these dates.
Our cable has a very interesting route and is offering different things to different geographies and customers. For Mauritius, we are offering a high speed, open access submarine network that will bring abundant and resilient capacity to boost the economy. We will also be connecting to Rodrigues island where there is currently no submarine cable, and this will transform the connectivity and economic landscape for the island. South Africa will also get its first direct route and shortest route to Asia and connectivity to fellow BRICS nation. For India, we have a multi layered proposition where we are connecting the Indian sub-continent to Africa and beyond. Also, all global carriers will get a new route in the southern hemisphere where they can connect continents very efficiently through the IOX system and our partnerships. Eventually through our cable and partnerships we will connect Asia to Africa, Europe, South America and North America, creating routes that were not there before.
How much design capacity, per fibre pair, will this system have and what plans are in store to develop this?
The Cable has design capacity of 13 Tbps per fiber pair and the total designed capacity of 52 tbps. We are ready meet the growing demands of our customers and derive more capacity from the cables
The IOX Cable system will be the first open access cable system in the region, how important is this for the India & SAARC region?
Open access as a policy is something that we are very passionate about and we will ensure that we are offering this to all our customers in our home markets. India and SAARC are very important geographies for us. We will be a full-fledged enabler of operators in the region and all our partners can enjoy seamless and easy connectivity onto the network and we will be providing them with diverse connectivity to reach major hubs globally. Overall it will be a new route to exit the subcontinent and get the required diversity that is much needed.
You recently signed a strategic partnership with Seaborn Networks, what will this new relationship bring?
We are very excited about our partnership with Seaborn Networks and what it brings for our customers. Currently, India access the internet content in the US via two routes. One is from Mumbai into Europe via the Suez Canal and then onwards to the east coast of US over the Atlantic and the second one is from Chennai to Singapore and onwards to Japan and then to the west coast of the US via the Pacific.
Through our partnership with Seaborn we will be providing a completely new route for India where our customers can go from Puducherry to South Africa on the IOX cable and then connect to SABR and Seabras-1 which will take them to New York on a completely diverse route from the existing ones.
What other alternative global routes are you looking at investing in to interconnect key emerging markets
Our Phase 2 plan is to connect Mauritius with Seychelles and Kenya and give a new route into the east African market. On our plan is also to further connect into Asia and onwards into Europe to ensure that our customers can experience seamless and end-to-end connectivity on our network.