According to The Finanicial Express, the English newspaper in Bangladesh, the Bangladesh Submarine Cable Company Limited (BSCCL) board has decided to invest Tk 1.73 billion (equivalently US$20 million) more in the SEA-ME-WE6 submarine cable system. With the increase, BSCCL's total cost for the SEA-ME-WE 6 will be about Tk 8.70 billion (equivalently US$100 million) from the initial Tk 6.93 billion.

In February 2022, the SEA-ME-WE-6 consortium, comprised of BSCCL (Bangladesh), Bharti Airtel Ltd. (India), Dhiraagu (Maldives), Djibouti Telecom, Mobily (Saudi Arabia), Orange (France), Singtel (Singapore), Sri Lanka Telecom, Telecom Egypt, Telekom Malaysia, Telin (Indonesia), and Trans World Associates (Pakistan), announced the contract in force for the supply contract of the SEA-ME-WE-6 (SMW6) submarine cable system.

SEA-ME-WE 6 cable map
SEA-ME-WE 6 cable map, Source: SMW6 consortium

 

The SMW6 cable system will have core landing stations in Singapore, India, Djibouti, Egypt and France, and branches to Bangladesh, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, the Maldives, Pakistan, Djibouti, Saudi Arabia, etc, for a total cable length of 19,200km.

The Bangladesh branch will stretch to the cable landing station in Cox's Bazar through the Bay of Bengal. In addition to its share of cost for the system trunk, BSCCL will be soly reponsible for the cost for the long spur Bangladesh branch, which caused the increase in its budget. BSCCL's investment of Tk 8.70 billion (equivalently US$100 million) will account for a rather high portion of the total investment in the SMW6 cable system by all of the consortium members.

BSCCL is expected to own 13,200 Gbps capacity on the SMW6 cable system.

BSCCL, under the telecommunications ministry, is the incumbent and only telecom operator authorized to build and own international submarine cables connecting Bangladesh.

When completed in 2024, the SMW6 cable system will the third international submarine cable systems landing in Bangladesh, following the SEA-ME-WE-4 in 2005 and the SEA-ME-WE-5 in 2017.