PANGILINAN-led PLDT Inc. continues its plan to boost its overseas connectivity by shelling out P7 billion for an undersea cable system.
In a statement on Wednesday, the listed telecommunications giant said it already finalized its agreement with a consortium backed by Amazon, Facebook, SoftBank, PCCW Global and NTT Communications that would build and operate a trans-Pacific cable system called “Jupiter.”
“This investment is of strategic importance, given that a significant amount of content are downloaded by data users from servers abroad, particularly from the United States and Japan,” PLDT Chief Revenue Officer Alfred Panlilio was quoted as saying in the statement.
“This project will enable us to further improve the capacity and resilience of the country’s international connectivity,” he added.
Spanning around 14,000 kilometers, Jupiter can deliver internet speeds of more than 22 terabytes per second (Tbps) from the Philippines to Japan, and 17.6Tbps to the US West Coast.
The system would also use the open cable model, allowing members of the consortium to acquire the fiber cables themselves without the need to wait for its upgrade cycle.
PLDT said Jupiter, which would be connected to the group’s cable landing station in Daet, Camarines Norte, will be operational by the third quarter of 2020.
“This new model in constructing international cable systems will allow us to be more agile and responsive to the needs of our customers,” said PLDT Vice President for International Submarine Cable Networks Gene Sanchez.
“We expect that this new project will further complement our existing network systems and address the increasing data traffic consumption of our PLDT fiber-to-the-home subscribers, enterprise business customers, and our LTE mobile data users,” he added.
PLDT shares fell by 0.71 percent or P8 to finish at P1,112 apiece on Wednesday.