The project includes a 550km undersea fibre optic cable which will connect to the Japan-Guam-Australia South submarine cable
A new international submarine cable contract has been agreed between Sunshine Coast Council in Australia and RTI Connectivity Pty (RTI-C). It will form the country’s fastest telecommunications connection to Asia and second fastest to the United States.
Mayor Mark Jamieson said Sunshine Coast Council was the first local government in Australia to secure an investment in an international submarine cable. He added: “Without a doubt, this infrastructure investment will result in a significant point of difference for the Sunshine Coast.”
The project includes a 550km undersea fibre optic cable which will connect the Sunshine Coast to the 9600km Japan-Guam-Australia South (JGA-S) submarine cable that is currently being delivered by a consortium involving RTI-C, Google and AARNet.
At Guam in the Western Pacific Ocean, the JGA-S cable will connect to the SEA-US Cable System, a highly efficient Trans-Pacific cable which will forge connections between South-East Asia and the United States for more than 1.5 billion people.
The investment of up to $35 million in the undersea cable connection from the Sunshine Coast to the JGA-S cable plus supporting land-based infrastructure is being jointly funded by the Sunshine Coast Council and the Queensland Government, with the project forecast to deliver up to 864 new jobs and stimulate $927 million in new investment in Queensland.
"A modern and growing knowledge-based economy relies on access to high-speed communications networks to ensure fast and reliable delivery of services"
Mayor Jamieson said he believed these figures were conservative, given that data traffic from Australia was increasing by at least 40 per cent annually.
“The Sunshine Coast will provide the fastest, most affordable international connection point for Queensland and Australia to Asia, providing a significant step-change in Queensland’s attractiveness as an investment location,” Mayor Jamieson said.
Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning Cameron Dick said the Queensland Government was providing $15 million towards the project from the jobs and regional growth fund following a commitment made at the last election.
“The reality is only a small volume of international telecommunications is delivered via satellite, with 95 to 99 per cent of Australia’s internet needs serviced by a limited number of undersea cables coming into Sydney and Perth – a risk and limitation for Australia’s internet connectivity and commercial data centre capacity,” said Minister Dick.
“The landing of a submarine cable on the Sunshine Coast will not only diversify the landing locations for telecommunications traffic, but will also provide speed, reliability and capacity improvements for the whole of the state.
“A modern and growing knowledge-based economy relies on access to high-speed communications networks to ensure fast and reliable delivery of services across our state, from key social services to telehealth in our hospitals.
“This initiative will bolster connectivity and reliability of these networks, and the services that rely on them, benefiting all Queenslanders.
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