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Telstra, Google & APTelecom boost Pacific digital connectivity
Wed, 24th Jan 2024

Telstra International has announced its collaboration with Google and APTelecom to enhance digital connectivity across the Pacific region. This significant partnership will be implemented through the Central Pacific Connect initiative, involving two new intra-Pacific cables, named Bulikula and Halaihai.

The global branch of the esteemed telecommunications and technology firm, Telstra International, has said the Central Pacific Connect initiative will be instrumental in uplifting connectivity for people and businesses throughout the Pacific. Bulikula - meaning "golden cowrie" in Fijian and signifying a rare shell worn by Pacific Island chieftains as a badge of rank - will connect Guam and Fiji. Halaihai, on the other hand, will link Guam to French Polynesia.

As a principal telecommunications provider, Telstra will own and operate a fibre pair on the main trunk of Bulikula. Following this, the company plans to join forces with other carriers and governments in building and operating branches to the Pacific islands. According to the firm, these branches will stimulate access to crucial digital services across the region, and in turn, enhance network performance, redundancy, and reliability.

Roary Stasko, CEO of Telstra International, expressed his anticipation about the partnership. "Telstra has decades of experience in providing international connectivity in the Pacific, and with our network scale and local expertise, we are looking forward to partnering with Google and APTelecom to build reliable, high-performance connectivity for island countries," he stated. Stasko further emphasized the company’s commitment to ameliorating infrastructure across the region to spur the growth of local economies.

In addition to the Central Pacific Connect initiative, Telstra is partnering with Google on the Tabua cable. This collaboration will dramatically enhance the diversity of paths from Guam to Australia via Fiji and other Pacific islands and between the US mainland and Australia. Therefore, the entire project not only signals significant progress for connectivity within the region but also creates more connections between the Pacific, the US, and Australia.

Overall, this partnership spearheaded by Telstra International, Google, and APTelecom via the Central Pacific Connect initiative encapsulates a promising stride forward in enhancing digital connectivity across the Pacific region, the companies state. From improving access to vital digital services to enhancing network performance, the impact of these projects will be instrumental in fostering future economic growth across these island nations and laying the groundwork for future technological advancements.

Telstra is a telecommunications and technology company with an Australian heritage and a growing international business. Telstra International provides services to thousands of business, government, carrier and OTT customers. Over several decades we have established the largest wholly-owned subsea cable network in the Asia-Pacific, with a unique and diverse set of infrastructure that offers access to the most intra-Asia lit capacity. In July 2022 Telstra completed the acquisition of Digicel Pacific, the largest mobile operator in the South Pacific region.