Indian telecom operator Bharti Airtel announced a submarine cable partnership with Telecom Egypt.
Airtel will get IRUs (Indefeasible Right of Use) on Middle East North Africa Submarine Cable (MENA Cable) and TE North Cable Systems and will take large capacities on two new Cable Systems (SMW5 & AAE1).
Airtel will have the right to use fiber pairs of MENA Cable from Egypt to India with access to Saudi Arabia and Oman, and other fiber pairs from Egypt towards Italy. It extends beyond MENA Cable, where Airtel will get the right to use a fiber pair from Egypt to France on TE North along with capacities on SMW5 and AAE1 cable systems.
Airtel will be able to diversify its network to serve the growth in demand for data services, particularly in emerging markets across South Asia, Africa and Middle East.
“The partnership including MENA Cable and TE’s network will be a good addition to our global network portfolio and provide us with a high quality and diversified new route to Western Europe and the rest of the world,” Ajay Chitkara, director and CEO – Airtel Business, said.
Telecom Egypt signed the agreement with OTMT to acquire MENA Cable with the aim of capitalizing on the growing traffic from India and Saudi Arabia to Europe and to obtain a new gateway to Europe through Italy.
Telecom Egypt has built the global network through investments in international submarine cable systems, namely: TE North, ALETAR, SEA-ME-WE-3, SEA-ME-WE-4, SEA-ME-WE-5, IMEWE, EIG, and AAE-1.
Airtel’s network portfolio includes ownership of i2i submarine cable system connecting Chennai to Singapore, consortium ownership of SMW4 submarine cable system connecting Chennai and Mumbai to Singapore and Europe, and new cable system investments like Asia America Gateway (AAG), India Middle East & Western Europe (IMEWE), Unity, EIG (Europe India Gateway) and East Africa Submarine System (EASSy).