Iraq-Kuwait deal proposes new international telecommunications corridor

Iraq-Kuwait deal proposes new international telecommunications corridor

This week saw a potentially highly significant signing ceremony take place when representatives of Iraq’s Informatics and Telecommunications Public Company (ITPC) and the Kuwaiti service provider Zajil Telecom signed a strategic collaboration agreement to create a communications route from the Gulf to Europe.

The aim is to create an international telecommunications corridor to Europe via Iraq, passing through Turkey. As well as strengthening Iraq’s strategic position in the region, it will offer an alternative to routes that pass through the Red Sea.

The Iraqi Minister of Communications, Hiyam Al-Yasiri, says that the agreement is the first of several projects for underwater and transit cables, aiming to create a communication flow from the Gulf States, South and West Asia up to the European continent via Iraqi land and sea ports.

This plan, and other initiatives, will, it is hoped, turn Iraq into a secure land corridor that may rival the region’s only international maritime route that goes via the Suez Canal.

Among other planned cable initiatives, initial approvals have been granted to connect the UAE to Al-Faw in southern Iraq. In addition Al-Yasiri said that a third cable would connect Saudi Arabia to Iraq soon. 2Africa is also expected to land in Iraq at the Al-Faw station this year.

Al-Faw is already a landing destination for the the FALCON and the GIBCS MENA subsea cables. Further agreements are expected to better connect Iraq to other Gulf states such as Oman and Bahrain.

The Capacity website points out this news comes as disruption to Red Sea subsea cables has highlighted the importance of redundant routes that avoid the geopolitical instability around the Gulf of Aden and through the Red Sea.


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