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Cambodia grants rights to Chinese firm to build submarine cables

Staff writer |
Cambodia granted a contract to the Cambodia Fiber Optic Communication Network CFOCN, a subsidiary of Shenzhen-based HyalRoute Group, to invest $69.7 million in constructing and operating submarine cables and a landing station in southwestern Preah Sihanouk province.

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The contract was signed by Cambodian Minister of Posts and Telecommunications Prak Sokhonn and chairman of CFOCN Huang Xinglong.

Kan Channmeta, Secretary of State of Cambodian Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications, said the contract is made in the form of BOOT (Build-Own-Operate-Transfer) with a period of 25 years before the company transfers the submarine cables and landing station to the government.

"This project will contribute to increasing the percentage of Internet users in Cambodia from the current 45 percent, or 6.5 million people, to about 80 percent in 2020," he said in a press conference after the signing ceremony.

Channmeta said the would-be submarine cables will have the capacity of 1.8 Terabits per second.

HyalRoute Group said that the contract would move forward its on-going project of Asia-Africa-Europe-1 (AAE-1) Submarine Cable Cambodia Branch to the stage of construction.

The AAE-1 Submarine Cable, a next-generation cable system built by an all-star consortium of 19 global telecoms, ventures to be the largest (25,000 km) and the newest cable to link major Asian, African, Middle Eastern and European nations via the lowest latency subsea route for over 15 years, the statement said.

When the project is completed, Cambodia will no longer depend on the neighboring countries, namely Thailand and Vietnam, in terms of international bandwidth.

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