Gulf Bridge International (GBI) has announced that it has launched the first ever terrestrial fibre-optic link connecting the Gulf region to Europe. The link consists of robust diverse routes through Iraq and Turkey, and is expected to significantly reduce latency time for connectivity from the Gulf and Asia to Europe. The so-called ‘North Route’ provides connectivity from the cable landing station at Al Faw, southern Iraq, crossing Iraq and Turkey to reach Istanbul, before linking to Frankfurt in Germany.
Ahmed Mekky, CEO of GBI, commented: ‘GBI’s route through Iraq and Turkey represents a major milestone for both regional and international communications. This more direct route will lead to faster connectivity via lower latency times, and the diversity we offer will reduce the likelihood of a reoccurrence of the three day internet outages of 2008. This investment is in line with our vision to connect the world to the Gulf and strongly underpins the continued ICT development across a region home to one sixth the world’s population. In addition, Iraq is now emerging as a modern communications hub, with significant implications for the nation’s economy and long term development’.
Activated in February 2012, GBI provides high speed submarine fibre connectivity between Qatar, the UAE, Iraq, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman and Saudi Arabia.