By Rostelecom

Rostelecom and other participants of the International Telecommunications Consortium “Georgia – Russia” have signed a contract with Alcatel-Lucent to modernize and expand Georgia – Russia submarine fiber-optical cable system. On behalf of the Consortium the contract was signed in an official ceremony by A.Yu.Kolpakov, General Director, Rostelecom; Harm Spliedt, Chief Executive Officer, DanTelco (Denmark); and Ilya Injia, General Director, FORTNET (Georgia).  On behalf of Alcatel-Lucent the contract was signed by Alexander Tikhonov, Head of Alcatel-Lucent's business in CIS countries. Modernization of the submarine cable system will be carried out in two phases and will be completed in mid-2011. On completion of Phase One, the throughput of the cable system will reach 20 Gbps, while on completion of Phase Two it will grow up to 60 Gbps. Modernization will be implemented by installing DWDM solution. Besides, to support growing traffic volumes, this part of the national Rostelecom's backbone segment and the corresponding part of the network of the other Consortium member, Georgian service provider FORTNET, will be expanded. “The necessity to expand throughput of the Georgia-Russia cable system is related to rapidly growing volumes of Internet traffic going to the Caucasus,” said Anton Kolpakov, General Director, OAO Rostelecom. “This project is a result of fruitful cooperation between members of the Consortium. It will certainly make a significant contribution to further development of mutually beneficial cooperation in the region.” “Alcatel-Lucent has a breadth of experience in delivering to its customers state-of-the-art optical solutions based on its dense wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM) technology for submarine cable systems. The modernization and expansion of the link will enable our customers to support the growing volume of international traffic while controlling their operation costs and ensuring quality of service. We are ready to offer them an optimal support in the project that brings them a significant step further in their communications capabilities”, said Alexander Tikhonov, Head of Alcatel-Lucent’s business in CIS. The Georgia-Russia submarine cable system is more than 400 kilometers long. It links the cities of Novorossiysk (Russia) and Poti (Georgia). It was built in 1999 to become a fiber-optical gateway between Europe and the Caucasus. The system's owner and operator is the international consortium that gathers Rostelecom, DanTelco, and FOPTNET. Today the system uses SDH STM-16 equipment with a total capacity of 2.5 Gbps. The system can support all traffic types, such as traditional telephony, data, Internet, voice over IP (VOIP), etc. It has high-speed links with the following areas: – the Caucasus (Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan).through the FOPTNET terrestrial fiber-optical network; – Russia  with the main points of presence (PoP) of service providers in Europe and South-East Asia, as well as connections with neighboring countries (Finland, the Baltic’s countries, Byelorussia, Kazakhstan, China (TAE), etc) through Rostelecom's terrestrial network.

Rostelecom (www.rt.ru/en) is Russia’s national telecommunications operator. The Company owns and operates a nationwide network (about 150,000 km in length), enabling Rostelecom to handle the majority of long-distance and international voice traffic transmission as well as TV and radio broadcasting channels in Russia. Additionally, the Company is the domestic market leader in the wholesale Internet services segment.

About Alcatel-Lucent Alcatel-Lucent (Euronext Paris and NYSE: ALU) is the trusted transformation partner of service providers, enterprises, strategic industries such as defense, energy, healthcare, transportation,  and governments worldwide, providing solutions to deliver voice, data and video communication services to end-users. A leader in fixed, mobile and converged broadband networking, IP technologies, applications and services, Alcatel-Lucent leverages the unrivalled technical and scientific expertise of Bell Labs, one of the largest innovation powerhouses in the communications industry. With operations in more than 130 countries and the most experienced global services organization in the industry, Alcatel-Lucent is a local partner with a global reach. Alcatel-Lucent achieved revenues of Euro 15.2 billion in 2009 and is incorporated in France, with executive offices located in Paris. For more information, visit Alcatel-Lucent on the Internet: http://www.alcatel-lucent.com.