Alcatel-Lucent and the West Africa Cable System (WACS) consortium have signed a contract for the maintenance of more than 9,000km of the WACS system linking Africa to Portugal. In commercial service since May 2012, WACS interconnects 13 African countries, unleashing a new wave of broadband capacity on the continent and enhancing international connectivity.
Under the new agreement WACS will join the Atlantic Private Maintenance Agreement (APMA), allowing the consortium to access Alcatel-Lucent’s maintenance vessels, as well as experienced, fully trained, and certified specialist personnel for cable repairs.
In delivering high-speed bandwidth of more than five terabits-per-second, the WACS infrastructure provides open access to regional telecom operators and Internet service providers. Furthermore, it contributes to opening up broadband in Africa, lowering the cost of access and allowing the delivery of innovative applications such as e-education and e-health, contributing to the improvement of people’s lives.
Commenting, Dr Angus Hay, Chairman of WACS Management Committee said: “With the start of its commercial service, WACS is already giving impetus to African economies along its cable route. This makes it even more critical to ensure optimal network availability and quality of service. Alcatel-Lucent’s world-class technical support and capabilities, including state-of-the-art cable ships, will further enhance the reliability that our low-latency system delivers to meet the performance and stability required.”
Philippe Dumont, President of Alcatel-Lucent Submarine Networks said: “This contract underlines Alcatel-Lucent’s leading role as a marine service provider, helping operators maintain their networks with the highest standards of service reliability and at the highest level of end-to-end efficiency. With the recent establishment of our depot in Cape Verde, we are able to offer the shortest possible mobilization time for any repair operations off West Africa.”