According to ProPakistani and China Xinhua News, the Pak-China Optical Fiber Cable (Pak-China OFC), which connects Pakistan with China through Khunjerab, was put into service on Friday, July 13, 2018. The Pak-China cable will be jointly operated and maintained by Special Communication Organization of Pakistan and China Telecom. China Telecom and SCO have sucessfully completed the acceptance and commission test of the cross-border system.
The Pak-China OFC covers a distance of 2950 kilometers, runs from Rawalpindi in Pakistan, through Khunjerab border-pass at 4733 meters height above the sea level, northwards to Wulumuqi in Xinjiang Autonomous Region of China. The Pakistan segment of the Pak-China OFC spans 822 kilometers, deployed by Huawei Technologies at a total cost of $44 million.
The Inauguration Ceremony for the Pak-China OFC took place at Pak-China Friendship Center earlier Friday. The Prime Minister of Pakistan Justice (R) Nasirul Mulk presented at the ceremony.
The ceremony was also graced by the Army Chief General Qamar Bajwa, China’s Ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing, Federal Minister for Information and Technology Muhammad Yusuf Shaikh, Huawei Middle East Region President Charles Yang, Special Communications Organistaion (SCO) Director General Major General Amir Azeem Bajwa HI (M), and Inspector General Information Technology Deputy General Humayun Aziz, China Telecom Global General Manager Deng Xiaofeng, Huawei Technologies Middle East Region Prresident Yang Yougui.
The Prime Minster officially inaugurated the project and the first live video call to SCO’s office in Khunjerab was made during the event. A memento for this day was presented to the Prieme Minister by IG Communication and Information Technology.
The Pak-China OFC is the only ICT based project that’s classified under the CPEC (China-Pakistan Economic Corridor).
With this new cable, Pakistan just got another high-speed back-haul to connect the country with the outside world. The cable is also the only way to connect with the outside world through land, all other international connections are managed through submarine cables.
There are now following international cables connecting Pakistan and the world:
- TW1 with a design capacity of 1.28Tbps
- Sea-Me-We-3 with 480 Gbps in two fiber pairs
- Sea-Me-We-4 with a design capacity of 1.28Tbps
- I-ME-WE with the max capacity of 3.86Tbps
- AAE-1 with a capacity of 40Tbps
- Sea-Me-We-5 with a design capacity of 24Tbps
- Pak-China Optical Fiber Cable
- PEACE cable with design capacity of 60Tbps, to be ready for service in the 4th quarter of 2019.