Fiji Plans Undersea Cable Linking Viti Levu, Vanua Levu

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Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i

Project to hook into Tui Samoa Cable, will improve telecom services

By Luke Rawalai

SUVA, Fiji (Fiji Times, March 18, 2016) – A plan for the extension of a telecommunication undersea fibre from Viti Levu to Vanua Levu has already started with the project expected to begin soon.

During a press conference in Labasa yesterday, Ministry of Communications and Information permanent secretary Ewan Perrin said the project was expected to be completed within the span of 12 to 18 months, costing Government several millions of dollars.

Mr Perrin said this was a project under the World Bank in its attempts to connect Samoa to Suva through its Tui Samoa Cable project.

He added Government was looking at opportunities of connecting Vanua Levu to Viti Levu through this same fibre link.

"This will open up and boost communications and teleconnections further connecting the island to the world at a much quicker and easier way," he said.

"We are in the early part of the project where we need to carry out environment assessment reports and survey where the appropriate sites may be, which is why we had been looking at areas in Savusavu and some parts of the island as well."

He said this was the first time for such projects to be attempted adding the cable would have better internet connections, mobile phone reception and microwave link connectivity in the North.

"The cable itself is one part of the project. We need local communication infrastructure from Telecom Fiji Ltd, Vodafone Fiji and Digicel," he said.

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