Vocus chairman Bob Mansfield said since 2013, the company, part of the consortium building the ASC, had deployed more than 23,000km of fibre optic networking across all of Australia’s mainland states and territories, as well as 11,500km of subsea cables.
“The North West Cable System from Darwin to Port Hedland services our globally-scaled energy sector and is an international gateway to economic markets to Australia’s north,” he said.
“The ASC establishes strategic and trade links with South East Asia and is the largest infrastructure project ever delivered by Vocus. We have completed it on time and under budget, exceeding specifications.
Mansfield was speaking at a parliamentary briefing in Canberra on Tuesday night attended by Communications Minister Mitch Fifield and Assistant Minister for Regional Development and Territories Sussan Ley, to mark the completion of the ASC.
The 4600km cable, stretching from Perth to Singapore via Indonesia, will also link Christmas Island, providing high-speed connectivity to regional geographical locations previously unable to cost-effectively and reliably access these services.
Mansfield also outlined the progress on the Coral Sea Cable system, which is being constructed on behalf of the governments of Australia, Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands, and referenced the work that Vocus was doing with the Northern Territory government to build a new submarine fibre optic cable to the Tiwi Islands.
“These multi-million infrastructure projects represent our commitment to meeting customer demand and recognises the growing requirements for affordable and trusted connectivity with our closest Asian trading partners,” he said.
“With this new infrastructure capability, Australia moves from being an end point on the global telecommunications grid to a viable transit point between the networks of Asia and North America, bringing more opportunities for trade and making us more competitive as a nation.”
Fifield congratulated Vocus on the delivery of “a sophisticated and incredibly complex project”.
“Although many people probably don’t know it, almost all of the Internet traffic from Australia to the world goes by subsea cables.
“The ASC has tremendous capacity and its successful completion has put competitive pressure on international transit prices which is good for business, the markets and Australia.”