JANUARY 6, 2009 -- Hibernia Atlantic (search for Hibernia Atlantic), a wholly owned subsidiary of Columbia Ventures Corp., says it has been selected to deploy a new cable network for the Department of Enterprise, Trade, and Investment (DETI) for Northern Ireland and the Department Communications, Energy, and Natural Resources (DCENR) for the Republic of Ireland as part of Project Kelvin.
Project Kelvin is a joint â�¬30 million initiative between DETI and DCENR and is partly funded through the EC INTERREG IVA programme. The new cable will link Armagh, Ballymena, Belfast, Coleraine, Londonderry, Omagh, Portadown, and Strabane to Europe and North America. In addition, the cable will also provide links to Letterkenny, Castleblayney, Dundalk, Drogheda, and Monaghan.
Hibernia says the Irish network will carry bandwidth with speed and accuracy directly to North America, avoiding the common and congested routes around London and New York waterways.
Hibernia will connect to their existing network by installing a branching unit in their northern transatlantic cable, thus providing two secure routes, one from Northern Ireland to Canada and the US and another from Northern Ireland into the UK. This will create the only diverse cable system offering secure circuits between Europe and Ireland with a protected ring between Ireland and the UK (via London, Manchester and Southport), Hibernia asserts. The submarine cable will also be linked to an international carrier hotel or telehouse facility in Coleraine, which will provide further access to other service providers and Hibernia Atlantic's new network points of presence.
Hibernia will also complete a cross-border build linking its existing communications network into the northwest of Ireland to reduce transatlantic data latency and the cost of international communications. With this link, network costs will compare very favourably with costs in Dublin and major UK cities while increasing competition in the international telecommunications market under the EU-funded ITERREG IV 2007- 2013 program, Hibernia Atlantic says.
Northern Ireland's Minister of Enterprise, Trade and Investment, Arlene Foster, said, "This â�¬30million investment will, for the first time, provide Northern Ireland with a direct telecommunications link to North America and greatly improve competition in the international telecommunications market. Northern Ireland businesses are competing more than ever for business in global markets. This project will deliver the kind of international telecommunications companies located in London, Amsterdam, Dublin, and New York already depend on. It will provide opportunities for Northern Ireland companies selling goods and services overseas but also improve our attractiveness to knowledge based inward investment.
"The current difficult economic situation makes it even more important for Northern Ireland to invest in our future. This project will transform how we connect to both North America and Europe. It will open up new markets and new trade opportunities for the region," Foster concluded.
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