A second fibre optic cable has landed in Seychelles and is expected to be operational in May. The Pakistan East Africa Cable Express (PEACE) cable arrived on Perseverance Island earlier this week.
According to Seychelles’ Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology Benjamin Choppy, the cable’s goal is to ensure that Seychelles has security in international connectivity.
Choppy noted that the PEACE cable, which is being developed at the cost of US$20 million by Seychelles Cable Systems (SCS), will serve as a backup in connecting Seychelles to the rest of the world via quicker and more reliable internet.
The government, Cable and Wireless Seychelles, and Airtel Seychelles form SCS, a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV).
Choppy stated that the new cable is built using cutting-edge technology, has a significantly larger capacity than the one in Seychelles, and will deliver better and more reliable services.
“We had only one cable for almost ten years now,” he explained, “and this constituted a concern for us if anything happened to the cable.” If you look at the amount of traffic we have on cable, the Seychelles East Africa System (SEAS) cable carries over 95 per cent of it, and if something went wrong, it would be disastrous. We are safe now that the replacement cable has arrived. Operators will also be able to access capacity directly from Europe, rather than having to transit through Tanzania and then switch to another cable for their other destinations.”
“The landing of the cable is another milestone for Seychelles and especially for Airtel because we have also invested in that joint venture,” Airtel Seychelles Managing Director Amadou Dina told BMA Sources. This cable will benefit our customers, and we have already made preparations for its arrival. We’ve already developed new products, and it’s a strategic move that I can’t discuss just yet.”
The European Investment Bank (EIB) and the African Development Bank (AfDB) provided funding for the project.