New Zealand’s prime minister John Key and minister of communications Amy Adams broke the soil for the Hawaiki submarine cable landing station at Bream Tail, Mangawhai Heads, Northland, on Wednesday.
The 14,000 km Hawaiki submarine cable will link New Zealand to Australia, Hawaii and mainland United States, with options to expand to several South Pacific islands.
The NZD 500 million project was announced in March this year when all-New Zealand equity funding was secured from Remi Galasso, a submarine cable industry veteran, New Zealand businessman Sir Eion Edgar and telecommunications entrepreneur Malcolm Dick.
“The Hawaiki cable brings huge benefits to New Zealand in terms of greater capacity, competition in Internet pricing, resilience and security of supply, and increased opportunities for our technology and IT industries,” said Sir Eion Edgar, Hawaiki chairman.
“We have surveyed the whole coast of Northland and selected Bream Tail in Mangawhai Heads as the best landing site for our cable system. Good local conditions, suitable water depth for the cable ship and easy access to terrestrial fiber networks were the key conditions to pick Bream Tail Farm,” said Remi Galasso, CEO of Hawaiki. “The build of the landing station will start early next year to have the station ready by mid-2017.”
David Wilson, chief executive of Northland Inc, welcomed the Hawaiki cable project as a key infrastructure project for the region. “For New Zealand, it means increased connectivity, increased competition, diversity and resilience. For Northland, it is all of those things but also the opportunity to strengthen and diversify our economy,” he said.