Alliance targets improved broadband services in Argentina

Silica Networks, a DATCO Group company, and provincial telecommunications companies REFSA Telecomunicaciones (Formosa), Marandú (Misiones), and Ecom (Chaco) have announced an alliance that will see the companies pool resources to develop a fiber-optic network that will link Argentina, Brazil, and Chile and improve broadband services in northern Argentina.

Silica Networks, a DATCO Group company, and provincial telecommunications companies REFSA Telecomunicaciones (Formosa), Marandú (Misiones), and Ecom (Chaco) have announced an alliance that will see the companies pool resources to develop a fiber-optic network that will link Argentina, Brazil, and Chile and improve broadband services in northern Argentina.

The federal public-private initiative plans to create a network of more than 15,000 km, comprised of both existing and new infrastructure. The network will link to submarine cables that will provide access to the Atlantic and Pacific while bypassing Buenos Aires.

Silica Networks will offer infrastructure that crosses the Cordillera region and offers Pacific infrastructure access from Chile via an 11,000-km fiber-optic network. An agreement with the state-owned telecommunications operator Telebras and other Brazilian operators will offer connectivity to the Atlantic via that country.

The combine network also will connect to the regional internet traffic exchange points (IXPs/NAPs) that the Argentine Chamber of Internet (CABASE) operates in Posadas, Misiones, and Saénz Peña, Chaco, as well as others in the region. The partners expect the infrastructure will promote the creation of new businesses in the region as well.

"The union will allow us to reach many more places together, pulling the telecommunications market to places where it was not before,” said Lucas Vicente, manager of REFSA Telecommunications. "Fiber-optic broadband networks and ICTs are today the critical infrastructure that will allow the development and economic independence of our region."

"We share interests, objectives and vision about the role that provincial telecommunications companies have in the development of infrastructure that ensures the availability and quality of service demanded by our users. This alliance is a first step towards establishing a regional pole of technological development and the knowledge economy in our region," added Marcelo Rodríguez, president of Marandú Communications.

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