Asia Netcom, a wholly-owned subsidiary of China Netcom (CN), has completed a major network upgrade that will bring a 50% increase in lit capacity to its pan-Asia submarine cable systems, EAC.

"As we get ready to launch our new Qingdao extension, this capacity upgrade is essential in serving the anticipated demand for connectivity between China to North Asia and the US," said Bill Barney, President and Chief Executive Officer of Asia Netcom. "Northern Chinese cities such as Beijing and industrial and economic hubs such as Dalian are now major destinations for multinational corporations looking to tap the burgeoning China market. With the Qingdao route, we will have one of the highest performing network solutions into those vital zones."

As part of the upgrade, 10 Gbps was lit up on each of EAC's four fiber pairs, effectively adding 40 Gbps of new bandwidth to EAC's existing 80 Gbps. The EAC system spans 19,500 km within Asia connecting Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Philippines, Singapore, Hong Kong and soon, China.

"This was certainly a mission-critical project for us as we move into 2006," added Wilfred Kwan, Chief Technology Officer of Asia Netcom. "With a number of major network projects in progress, such as the Qingdao landing and a core network upgrade to the new Lucent LambdaUnite platform, our engineering team and partners have done a tremendous job in raising the new capacity."

The additional capacity will support Asia Netcom's extensive service and product portfolio, which includes leading MPLS-based transport and network solutions, a Tier 1 Internet backbone, as well as traditional connectivity solutions such as international private lines and ATM and Frame Relay.

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