Cinia, Far North Digital, partner for Pan-Arctic fibre cable

Created December 22, 2021
News and Business

Finnish data network and software solutions company Cinia, and Canadian telecoms and data storage firm Far North Digital, have signed an MoU to build a fibre optic cable system linking Europe and Asia through the Arctic. Alcatel Submarine Networks will take the lead on project design and installation.

The planned cable system 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. Cinia says the 14,000 kilometre cable system greatly reduces the optical distance between Asia and Europe, thus minimising signal latency.

“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 addition, True North Global Networks LP, a Canadian affiliate of Far North Digital, says it is committed to engagement with indigenous organisations and local governments to develop a number of branch landings in Arctic Canada. Utilising locally owned community-based digital networks a direct connection to the global internet will establish backbone services for high-speed broadband communications across this underserved region.

“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 an unparalleled ability to conduct research into climate change,” says Guy Houser, chief technical officer of Far North Digital.

“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 Japan. Prime Minister Kishida has announced a new digital vision including a plan to build new landing points around the island country. My long-term plan about Hokkaido being a natural gateway to North and East is becoming reality. I’m very excited to be part of the Far North Fibre initiative”, says Jun Murai, Professor at Keio University and Special Adviser to the Japanese Cabinet. The project, which will cost around €1 billion euros (US$1.15 billion), is expected to go live by the end of the year 2025.

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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.