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September 21, 2021, 7:00 pm

Investors jump into undersea-cable market as internet woes continue

(14:26:31 PM 18/06/2015)
( - Problems with the Asia America Gateway (AAG) undersea cable linking countries to the internet has opened up opportunities for other sea-cable service providers.

 Investors jump into undersea-cable market as internet woes continue


Afzal Abdul Rahim, CEO of TIME dotCom Berhad, said that TIME has bought 25 percent of the Vietnamese CMC Telecom in a deal worth $12 million.

He said TIME, the second largest telecom group in Malaysia, has invested more than $200 million in many sea cable systems over the last five years. 

TIME has begun implementing its strategy on conquering the Indochina market.

Local newspapers commented that it is now the golden time for TIME to join forces with CMC Telecom to provide sea cable services. 

Afzal Abdul Rahim has confirmed a plan on providing cable services, adding that it is considering setting up more cable systems, both sea and land, to improve internet connection capability.

Internet users have repeatedly urged internet service providers to develop other cable systems to ease heavy reliance on AAG.

Buu Dien newspaper quoted an expert as saying that AAG has had problems since the very beginning and that design problems are causing the frequent breakdowns. 

Recently, the AAG developer decided to suspend AAG for 10-day maintenance because of the bad internet connection quality. 

The undersea cable is expected to resume its normal operation from June 17. The problems with internet connection in the last few days have upset Vietnamese internet users.

All internet service providers believe that they need standby systems in case AAG breaks down again.

Viettel, one of the most powerful technology groups in the country, said it has injected money into APG (Asia Pacific Gateway), the submarine cable connecting Vietnam with Asia and the US, and AAE1-Asia Africa Europe, which connects Asian countries with Europe and Africa. 

A senior executive of Viettel said the two cable systems are expected to become operational in 2016. 

By that time, Viettel will have five systems for international connection which can ensure sufficient standby capacity in case of emergency.

Currently, AAG undertakes 30 percent of Viettel’s internet connection. As AAG has been suspended for maintenance, Viettel has been mobilizing capacity from Intra Asia cable network. 

AAG has undergone maintenance four times this year.

Telecom groups have been urged to think of alternative solutions to AAG, the optical cable system that has had many recent breakdowns and slow internet connections.  A telecom expert noted that the sea cable break could occur at any time in the future. The cable could break easily if it is hooked and dragged away by an anchor of a vessel with tens of thousands of tons, which has caused 70 percent of the cuts on the sea cable.


Du Lich

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