Fibre-optic cable on its way to Seychelles


08-May-2012

A Seychelles delegation and other stakeholders in the project were in Dar es Salaam, precisely on Msasani beach, on Saturday to attend the cable landing related activities there, and from where the vessel Ile de Sein started laying the cable on its way to Seychelles.

It is expected to reach Beau Vallon Bay by May 20, 2012.
The party in Dar es Salaam included the Minister for Natural Resources and Industry, Peter Sinon; the chairman of the Seychelles Cable Systems (SCS), Benjamin Choppy; the Seychelles consul for Tanzania, Marievonne Pool; representatives of Cable and Wireless Seychelles, Airtel (Seychelles & Tanzania), ZANTEL and Alcatel.

Together, they symbolically pulled ashore the undersea cable which will link Seychelles to the rest of the world.

Minister Sinon leads the way by pulling the fibre optic cable ashore on Msasani beach accompanied by SCS’s representatives and partners in the project

The cable landing related activities in Dar es Salaam were hosted by ZANTEL and arranged by the residing Seychelles consul. ZANTEL is the SCS landing party for SEAS (Seychelles East Africa System) in Tanzania.

Mr Choppy has on behalf of SCS thanked ZANTEL and also the Seychelles consul in Tanzania for all the arrangements and activities organised to cover the landing of SEAS in Dar es Salaam.

“We truly appreciate it and will certainly learn from them for our own landing in Seychelles later this month,” he said.

Seychelles is until now the only country in this part of the Indian Ocean yet to be connected by an undersea cable system.

Both Minister Sinon and Mr Choppy have described the beach landing in Dar es Salaam as ’historic’ and a milestone in Seychelles’ development. Apart from directly linking our country to Tanzania, for Seychelles it will be its very first optic fibre submarine cable system and it will be one of the strategic infrastructure of the country essential to support its ongoing development .

A beach manhole similar to the one in Dar es Salaam has been built at Beau Vallon to receive the cable when it arrives in Seychelles on May 20.

The landing party in the Seychelles hosting the cable landing station, Cable & Wireless, has confirmed that it is ready to receive the cable.

Ile de Sein, the ship which is laying the cable all the way from Dar es Salaam to Seychelles

The Ile de Sein was recently in Seychelles where Vice-President Danny Faure, who holds the portfolio for Information Technology & Communications and representatives of the telecom companies involved in the project were given technical details of the project by the captain, Aymeric Toumit.

According to Captain Toumit, a total of 16.93kms of cable is expected to be buried to a target depth of 1 metre and the Seychelles burial area will be 13.313kms from the Beau Vallon beach manhole.

The optical cable will be buried from the beach manhole at Beau Vallon to a sea depth of 60m to minimise the risk of anchors and fishing lines getting caught in the cable.

The cable project is a public private partnership, with the three parties involved being the government of Seychelles, Cable & Wireless (Seychelles) and Airtel (Seychelles). The project is costing approximately Euro 27 million to implement and this has been financed through equity from the three shareholders and loans from the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the African Development Bank (AfDB).

In his interview with the Tanzanian press at the landing in Dar es Salaam, Minister Sinon pointed out that “this is an example of a real public-private partnership (PPP) which should be emulated in Seychelles, especially for large projects of strategic national importance…”

Contributed by SCS

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