SUBMARINE TELECOMS INDUSTRY REPORT – SECTION 8.3: AMERICAS REGIONAL MARKET

Regional Snapshot

  • Current Systems: 62
  • Capacity: 713 Tbps
  • Planned Systems: 7
  • Planned Capacity: 90 Tbps
Americas Systems

Americas Systems

8.3.1 Current Systems

Table 7: Americas Systems, 2010-Present
RFS Year System Capacity (Tbps) Length (kms)
2014 AMX-1 50 17800
2015 PCCS 60 6000
2016 Guantánamo Bay Cable  – 1500
2017 Junior 390
2017 Monet 60 10556
2017 Seabras-1 72 10750
2017 Tannat 90 2000
2019 ARBR 48 2700
2019 Austral 16 2900
2019 Crosslake Fibre 58
2019 Curie 10000
2019 Guantánamo Bay Cable 2 1200

Characterized by steady growth since the early 1990s, the Americas region has continued to enjoy frequent additions over the last 10 years – going from 34 cables in 2008 to 50 cables in 2018.

Figure 72 - Systems in Service - Americas

Figure 72 – Systems in Service – Americas

After ten years of steady growth, with an average of about two systems being ready for service per year, the region is currently undergoing another boom in development with fours systems implemented in 2017, five systems in 2019 and eight additional systems planned to be ready for service by the end of 2020. (Figure 72)

8.3.2 Future Systems

Table 8: Americas Planned Systems
RFS Year System Capacity (Tbps) Length (kms)
2020 AU-Aleutian 1456
2020 Galapagos Subsea System 1000
2020 Hudson Bay Link
2020 Kanawa 10 1746
2020 Ketchikan – Prince Rupert
2020 Malbec 2500
2020 Tannat Extension 90
2020 WALL-LI 95

Unlike most of the other markets, the Americas region has consistently observed medium to high levels of growth.

Figure 73 - KMS Added - Americas

Figure 73 – KMS Added – Americas

Since 2005, new cable development has consistently added an average of just over 4 percent more kilometers per year. Breaking from the average, there was a 7 percent increase in 2009, an 11 percent increase in 2014, a 12.5 percent increase in 2017 and an 8 percent increase in 2019. By and large, the region has seen steady growth until 2017 when an unprecedented 12.5 percent growth rate was observed. Looking forward, this higher than average growth rate will not continue through 2021, with the number of planned kilometers for 2020 only resulting in a 3 percent increase in kilometers added and no new systems currently planned for 2021 or later. (Figure 73)

Figure 74 - Contract in Force – Americas, 2020-2022

Figure 74 – Contract in Force – Americas, 2020-2022

There are currently seven systems planned for 2020 though only 29 percent of those cables have achieved their CIF milestone. (Figure 74) Additionally, there are no cables planned for 2021 and beyond. The last few years have been relatively busy compared to historical trends for the Americas region and may have satisfied infrastructure needs for now. With a development rate that has remained steady since 2001, productivity in 2020 will be higher than historical norms should most of these planned systems come into force. However, the next 12-18 months are busy for the industry at large. With a finite number of cable ships to accomplish so many projects, several systems for this region could end up being delayed a year or more.