By Radio New Zealand

Samoa is one step closer to getting faster, cheaper internet with the start on the Savaii component of the country's new submarine cable.

Construction of the 1,300 kilometre system will cost $US57.4million and will connect Upolu and Savai'i, to the Southern Cross Cable Network in Suva, Fiji.

The project was launched by the Samoa government with support from the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank and the Australian Government.

Speaking at the ground breaking ceremony Samoa's communications minister Afamasaga Rico Tupa'i said high speed internet was essential for improving the lives of ordinary Samoan people.

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