The 2Africa consortium announced, on Tuesday, the addition of a new segment – the 2Africa PEARLS branch – to its subsea cable network, extending to the Arabian Gulf, India, and Pakistan. This extension will bring the total length of the 2Africa cable system to over 45,000 km, making it the longest subsea cable system ever deployed.
The consortium includes China Mobile International, MTN GlobalConnect, Orange, STC, Telecom Egypt, Vodafone, and WIOCC.
2Africa will provide excellent connectivity services to three continents; Africa, Europe, and Asia, by adding vital landing locations in Oman (Barka), UAE (Abu Dhabi and Kalba), Qatar (Doha), Bahrain (Manama), Kuwait (Kuwait), Iraq (Al-Faw), Pakistan (Karachi), India (Mumbai), and a fourth landing in Saudi Arabia (Al Khobar). The new 2Africa branch joins recently announced extensions to the Canary Islands, the Seychelles, Comoros Islands, Angola, and a new landing to south-east Nigeria.
Through the new extensions, 2Africa cable will contribute to supporting the digital economy and enhancing the ability of many communities to provide more and more efficient internet-based services, such as education, healthcare, and business services.
The 2Africa submarine cable system was planned to provide interconnection services to over 1.2 billion people when it was announced in May 2020, but with the addition of the new sector 2Africa PEARLS, international interconnection services will reach an additional 1.8 billion people bringing the total beneficiaries to 3 billion people, which is equivalent to 36% of the world’s population.
Alcatel Submarine Networks (ASN) will implement the new system using the latest technologies such as SDM technology, which allows the use of a greater number of optical fibres up to 16 fibre pairs, twice what is provided by current technologies, which helps to provide greater capacities at lower costs.