Pan-Arctic fibre optic cable system to link Europe and Asia

Pan-Arctic fibre optic cable system to link Europe and Asia

Business news |
By Jean-Pierre Joosting

Far North Digital-True North Global Networks and Cinia have announced plans to jointly construct a fibre optic cable system linking Europe and Asia through the Arctic. Alcatel Submarine Networks (ASN) will take the lead on project design and installation.

Far North Digital, a North American company focused on telecommunications infrastructure development and Finnish networks, cybersecurity and software provider Cinia have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to build a submarine fibre optic cable. The joint network will run from Japan, via the Northwest Passage, to Europe with landings in Alaska and the Canadian Arctic. European landings are planned in Norway, Finland and Ireland. 

The 16,500 kilometer fibre optic cable system transits geopolitically stable and seismically safe regions and greatly reduces the optical distance between Asia and Europe, thus minimizing signal latency.  

True North Global Networks is working with Indigenous organizations and local governments to develop branch landings in Arctic Canada, providing locally owned networks a direct connection to the global internet.

“This cable system is more than a way to speed and improve the security of telecommunications between nations, it is a bridge over the digital divide, providing Northern communities with better opportunities for sustainable self-determination through economic development, enhanced educational options, and improved access to healthcare. Furthermore, it will serve as a platform that offers science a new and enhanced ability to conduct research into climate change”, says Guy Houser, Chief Technical Officer of Far North Digital.

“There is an increasing demand for secure and fast international connectivity with new diverse routes. Spanning three of the world’s largest internet adopting continents the Far North Fibre will be a true global venture”, says Ari-Jussi Knaapila CEO of Cinia.

In Asia, the main gateway for the cable system is Japan.

“The Arctic connection between Japan and northern Europe has long been a shared passion of Japan and Cinia, as the diversity of international connections is vital to the island country. This connection provides excellent support for the Japanese government’s digitalization development program,” says Jun Murai, Professor at Keio University and Special Adviser to the Japanese Cabinet.

The target for in-service cable is by the end of the year 2025. Cost estimate for the project is approximately 1.48 billion CAD. Industry leader ASN has been chosen as the lead EPC (engineering, procurement, construction) partner for the project.

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