GOODBYE CABLE AND WIRELESS, HELLO TONGA LOCAL CONTROL

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NUKU‘ALOFA, Tonga (August 28, 2000 - Tonga Chronicle/PINA Nius Online)---Tonga's international telecommunications services have been taken over by a new wholly government-owned company, Tonga Telecommunications International, Limited. It ends 22 years of operation by Britain's Cable and Wireless plc.

The Tongan government and Cable and Wireless agreed that all Tongan national staff would be transferred to the new company.

Four million dollars was presented as the final payment for the Cable and Wireless plc assets acquired by Tongan Telecommunications International Limited.

The handover was signed by His Highness Prime Minister Prince Lavaka Ata ‘Ulukalala and the regional representative of Cable and Wireless plc Phillip Richard.

Ceremonies included a dedication service at the Free Wesleyan Church and a lunch at the International Dateline Hotel.

Cable and Wireless plc has been operating Tonga's international telecommunications services since 1978. Domestic telecommunications are operated by the Tonga Telecommunications Commission.

Tonga Telecommunications International Limited will continue to operate all services that had been provided by Cable and Wireless, including Internet services.

Pacific Islands News Association (PINA) Website: http://www.pinanius.org 

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