Telecom Egypt signed a memorandum of understanding with India's Airtel on Monday to enhance cooperation in the maritime cable field.
According to the memo, the Indian company will get indefeasible right of use (IRU) on the Middle East, North Africa Submarine Cable (MENA Cable) and TE North Cable Systems, Telecom Egypt said in a statement.
The agreement will enable Airtel to further diversify its global network to meet growing demands with its data services, particularly in emerging markets across South Asia, Africa and the Middle East.
It will also help the Indian company benefit from the favourable economic solutions presented by Telecom Egypt in regards to the existing wide cable systems network.
Telecom Egypt is Egypt’s first integrated telecom operator, and the partnership grants Airtel the right to use fibre pairs of MENA Cable from Egypt to India with access to Saudi Arabia and Oman, and other fibre pairs from Egypt to Italy.
Under the agreement, Airtel will also get the right to use a fibre pair from Egypt to France on TE North, along with capacities on SMW5 and AAE1 cable systems.
“The partnership involving MENA Cable and TE’s network will be a good addition to our global network portfolio and will provide us with a high quality and diversified new route to Western Europe and the rest of the world,” said Ajay Chitkara, Airtel’s director and chief executive officer.
“It will provide impetus to India’s emergence as a major regional internet hub, while serving our customers across the SAARC region (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) with seamless global connectivity,” he added.
Airtel’s global network portfolio includes ownership of an i2i submarine cable system connecting Chennai to Singapore, a consortium ownership of a SMW4 submarine cable system connecting Chennai and Mumbai to Singapore and Europe, and new cable system investments with Asia America Gateway, India-Middle East-Western Europe (I-ME-WE), Unity, EIG and the East Africa Submarine System.