New partners expand Arctic Connect cable project

Created September 29, 2020
News and Business

Arctic Connect, the international project is to build the first trans-Arctic submarine fibre cable between Europe and Asia has received a boost with the addition of new partners from Japan, Norway and Finland.

Finland-based Cinia Ltd, is leading the project in collaboration with Russian operator MegaFon. New partners include Sojitz Corporation, a multi-national trading and investment company, which has agreed to fund Cinia Alliance as the lead of the Japanese partnership consists of Atago Corporation, Crypton Future Media Inc., Hokkaido Electric Power Co. Ltd., Optage Inc. and Sakura Internet Inc.

Norwegian companies including Bredbåndsfylket Arctic Link AS, Ishavslink AS and Sør-Varanger Utvikling, and C-Fiber Hanko Oy, Pietarsaaren Seudun Puhelin Oy, Lapit Oy, Napapiirin Energia ja Vesi Oy and Rovaniemen Kehitys Oy from Finland have also joined the Cinia Alliance.

“Arctic Connect is a real international opportunity. Cinia is very pleased to see broad international interest towards the project, and I warmly welcome our new partners from Japan, Norway and Finland to join the Cinia Alliance. The project is moving forward and together we will have an exciting journey to make the plans real” says Ari-Jussi Knaapila, CEO of Cinia Ltd.

“The Arctic Connect cable will have a tremendous positive impact for the Arctic region. The submarine cable will not only contribute to the evolving of the Arctic broadband sector, but also to the whole Arctic society through new business sectors, research opportunities, resilience and safety, connectivity for the people and so on says Dag-Kjetil Hansen, CEO of Bredbåndsfylket AS.

Cinia says the planned 10,000 km new Arctic cable will provide a new route and will increase network resilience to complement and secure existing connections. The new cable route also supports the development of the Arctic region. The project is currently in the stage of feasibility study and construction work of the cable is scheduled from 2022 through 2023.

Cinia, which constructed the 1,200 km C-Lion1 submarine cable from Germany to Finland, which was launched in 2016, began seabed surveys for the Arctic Connect project earlier this year.

The melting of the region’s ice has opened up the possibility of constructing the Arctic subsea fibre cable route and in June 2019, Cinia and MegaFon signed a Memorandum of Understanding to set up the joint venture to build a submarine communications cable across the Arctic Sea.

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This article was written
by Peter Dykes

Peter Dykes is a independent telecoms and technology journalist who has over that last 30 years written for a wide range of B2B publications and companies. A former BT engineer, he specialises in networks and associated support systems. He is currently Editor of Optical Connections.