SEA-ME-WE-5 subsea cable project completed

15 December 2016 | James Pearce


Construction on a 20,000km subsea cable running between Marseille and Singapore has been completed, the SEA-ME-WE-5 consortium has announced.

SEA-ME-WE-5 (SMW5) connects 16 countries across three continents, offering 100Gbps DWDM technology and capacity of 24Tbps on three fibre pairs.

It has been built to deal with bandwidth demand between Europe and Asia that has quadrupled, offering amongst the lowest latency connection across the route, the consortium claims.

It has carrier neutral Points of Presence (PoPs) at its main endpoints, located at Marseille, operated by Interxion; Palermo, Sicily Hub and Singapore, operated by Equinix and Global Switch.

“The completion of the SEA-ME-WE 5 project is a landmark system upgrade for all data users worldwide. This system facilitates a new age of digital transformation and innovation, catalysing greater economic activities, trade and growth across three continents,” said SEA-ME-WE-5 consortium management committee chair Linette Lee.

“I would like to thank all the members of the consortium for their unstinting support and commitment toward this project. Together, we collaborated across different time zones and overcame numerous challenges to achieve the complex integration of technologies as promised and on time.”

The SMW5 consortium is made up of Bangladesh Submarine Cable Company Limited (BSCCL), China Mobile International (CMI), China Telecom Global (CTG), China United Network Communications Group Company Limited (CU), Djibouti Telecom (DT), Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company (du), Myanmar Post and Telecom (MPT), Ooredoo, Orange, PT Telekomunikasi Indonesia International (Telin), Saudi Telecom Company (STC), Singapore Telecommunications Ltd (Singtel), Sparkle, Sri Lanka Telecom PLC (SLT), Telecom Egypt (TE), Telekom Malaysia Berhad (TM), TeleYemen, Turk Telekom International (TTI) and Trans World Associates (Pvt) Limited Pakistan (TWA).

It lands at Marseille, Palermo, Turkey, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Djibouti, Oman, UAE, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Malaysia, Indonesia and finally Singapore.

It was first announced in June 2014, and has seen a number of landmarks over the last year, including connecting with TI Sparkle’s Sicily Hub and winning the 2016 Global Carrier Award for subsea project of the year.