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Chile, China moving ahead with underwater fiber optic cable connection

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-06-08 16:11

SANTIAGO - The Chilean government announced Wednesday that it is working with China to install an underwater fiber optic cable between the two countries.

At a press conference, Under-Secretary for Telecommunications Rodrigo Ramirez said the project shows China views Chile as a bridge to Latin America. "Through here, the largest flow of information and data will be passed."

It would be the first underwater fiber optic cable to directly connect Asia with Latin America and would help drive interconnectivity, trade, investment, as well as scientific and cultural exchanges between two continents.

Chile's Undersecretariat of Telecommunications and China's National Development and Reform Commission have signed a deal to carry out a feasibility study on various digital interconnection options, including the fiber optic cable.

Ramirez said China is the right partner to help Chile prepare for challenges such as the "Internet of Things" and the "Economy 4.0."

"Chile is among the leading countries in Latin America for internet access with over 26 million connections, and we have the fastest broadband in Latin America, but we need the right infrastructure for what is upcoming," said Ramirez.

He added that, with a fiber optic cable, Chile's southern area would become a true scientific center, with far lower international telecommunication costs.

The cable begins in the city of Valparaiso, passing New Zealand, Australia and French Polynesia to end up in China's Shanghai.

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