News

$300m Asia Link Cable System heads to the seas

ALC route.jpg

The US$300 million consortium-led subsea cable, Asia Link Cable System (ALC), has been announced.

The 6,000km Southeast Asian cable will connect Hong Kong SAR and Singapore, with branches to the Philippines, Brunei and Hainan, China, with the aim to boost data capacity in the region and upgrade local capacities.

It will also feature a minimum of eight fibre pairs, with 18Tbps per fiber pair minimum trunk design capacity.

“ALC is a great accomplishment of Asian carriers which overcame difficulties of Covid impacts, and it is also the only subsea project with zero face-to-face meetings from the memorandum of understanding to the construction and maintenance agreement signing in the industry," said Chang Weiguo, co-chair of ALC (CTG).

"ALC consortium adopts an open and inclusive principle and will attract more investors in the near future to make it more cost effective, which will reinforce the resilience of interconnectivity in Asia and better serve digital economy in the region.”

The consortium, co-led by Singtel and China Telecom Global Limited (CTG), also includes four other regional carriers – China Telecommunications Corporation (CTC), Globe Telecom (Globe) and DITO Telecommunity Corporation (DITO) and Unified National Networks (UNN).

According to the e-Conomy Southeast Asia (SEA) Report by Google, Demand for high-bandwidth, low-latency, and high-redundancy internet connectivity is burgeoning in Southeast Asia with the region’s digital economy forecast to expand to US$363 billion by 2025, driven by growth in e-commerce and increasingly digital populations.

“We started planning and designing the ALC cable more than two years ago at the onset of the pandemic, having anticipated the inevitable growth in high-definition content consumption, trade and innovation in this region," said Alan Tan, co-chair, ALC (Singtel).

"Despite the challenges presented by safe management restrictions, we managed to come up with a system that will help meet the evolving needs of consumers and enterprises and boost local economies today and in the near future.”

The system also boasts an open cable system architecture, enabling all parties to select and maintain independent line terminal equipment in line with their specific customer requirements.

HMN Technologies (HMN Tech) was chosen as the system supplier and is expected to complete construction of the ALC by Q3 of 2025.

“It is a great honor for HMN Tech to team up with the global leading telecom operators to provide innovative turnkey subsea cable solution for the ALC System. This new cable system will provide new impetus for the ALC consortium to establish digital and intelligent networks in Asia and around the world," added Mao Shengjiang, CEO of HMN Tech.