Australia reportedly welcomes new undersea cable laying commitment

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Dear Editor,

SOON after being elected as Solomon Islands new Prime Minister, the Hon. Rick Hou assured the nation he would pursue the undersea cable project with the new arrangements that had been offered by Australia.

Under the new arrangement a fresh company will take over from Huawei to lay the submarine cable from Sydney to Honiara.

According to the latest news bulletin broadcast today, 23 November 2017, by Radio New Zealand International, Australia is reported to welcome the decision taken by PM Hou

Quoting the RNZI bulletin it read:

Australia has welcomed the announcement by Solomon Islands’ new prime minister that he is committed to a proposal for a new submarine internet cable.

Rick Hou made the commitment shortly after his election as prime minister last week.

The new cable project, which could also connect Papua New Guinea, replaces an earlier plan for a Huawei constructed cable between Sydney and Honiara.

That plan was strongly opposed by Canberra, which cited national security concerns over the Chinese company’s involvement.

Australia’s minister for international development and the Pacific, Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, said scoping work would be undertaken over the next few months.

“We see that there are significant efficiencies from implementing both cables at the same time. So we see this project as representing the best opportunity to not only deliver an international telecommunications standard to both the countries but also provide both economic and development benefits to both countries as well.”

Yours sincerely

Frank Short