Australian-based submarine cable development specialist SUB.CO announced that it will expand its Oman Australia Cable (OAC) with a new branch unit in Salalah.
About 1,200 kilometres of new cable will be added to the existing 9,800 kilometre system, laid from OAC’s branching unit to the new interconnection hub of Salalah, adding a new diverse path from the existing cable which lands in Barka near Muscat.
The OAC, which costs over $300 million, was officially switched on by Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese in Perth, Australia in October 23, 2022. The cable system has landing points in Perth, Australia; West Island, Cocos (Keeling) Islands and Muscat, Oman.
It is the first fully diverse cable between EMEA and Asia that avoids the Malacca Straight — a narrow stretch of water between Indonesia and Malaysia — that has a high level of seismic and marine activity causing regular outages on submarine cable and a single point of geographical risk.
Once complete, the new branch will be able to interconnect with several new hyperscale cable systems that lead from Salalah into Europe and Africa, including the Meta-backed 2Africa, the Reliance Jio-backed India-Europe Express (IEX), and Google, Sparkle and Omantel-backed Blue-Raman.
In addition to express low-latency connectivity, this new direct route delivers geographic diversity from all existing systems west of Australia.
Bevan Slattery, founder and CEO of SUB.CO, said, “I am incredibly excited to be sharing our plans to build OAC’s diverse landing in Salalah, which will enable a new low latency route from Australia to Europe.”
"With a number of other major subsea cable systems interconnecting, or planning to interconnect, at Salalah, we hope to provide our customers with an express gateway for onward capacity from Australia to EMEA, and enable enhanced network performance, connectivity and resiliency for all of Australia,” he added.
The Salalah branch is an extension of OAC’s deep-sea route which crosses the deep waters of the Indian Ocean and Arabian Sea, avoiding shallow, congested and earthquake-prone paths that pose significant connectivity risks from unplanned outages.
SUBCO is currently in the project planning phase with the branch landing due to be completed and operational by the end of 2024.
OAC is Australia’s first express subsea cable to Europe, the Middle East and Africa creating a pathway of diverse connectivity from Australia to Oman, Europe and onwards. A cross-connection to the Indigo cable system gives SUB.CO a route from Australia to Europe and the USA.