PLDT, Smart invest P856M in new fiber optic link

Posted at 10/15/2012 12:55 PM | Updated as of 10/15/2012 12:55 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (PLDT) and Smart Communications are investing P856 million to build a new fiber optic cable route to connect Cebu to Bohol to Misamis Oriental.

The new facility is expected to be completed by September next year. Initially equipped with 210Gbps, the facility will boost PLDT transmission links to Bohol and Mindanao. 

"We have fast-tracked this particular project because the demand for broadband services - both from consumers and businesses - is growing rapidly in the Visayas and Mindanao areas," PLDT and Smart head of network and IP systems, Rolando G. Peña said, in a statement. 

He said PLDT and Smart already have over 54,000 kilometers of fiber optic cable assets in the country.

The project will involve laying down around 450 kilometers of fiber optic cables from Cebu to Cagayan de Oro City. Around 300 kms of cable will be inland, while the rest will be submarine links in the sea between Cebu and Bohol and between Bohol and Misamis Oriental.

The new fiber optic link to Bohol will provide 20Gbps of capacity, while the link to Mindanao will carry 190Gbps of capacity.

"Bohol has been trying to get investors to set up call centers in the province for the past several years.  But the lack of robust communications infrastructure has been an obstacle," Pena said.

The project will add a third leg to the two fiber optic highways already connecting Mindanao to the rest of the country via PLDT's domestic fiber optic network. 

One existing link runs from Cebu to Negros Oriental and then on to Ozamis City, Misamis Occidental, while the other starts in Cebu and then connects Leyte and then Butuan, Caraga region.

"By adding a third fiber link to Mindanao, we will be able to continue providing service in Mindanao even if we suffer two breaks in our transmission networks connecting the island," Pena said.