MINTC invites comments on the Baltic Sea submarine cable project

Ministry of Transport and Communications
Publication date 18.4.2013 15.45
News item

The Ministry of Transport and Communications invites comments on the Baltic Sea submarine cable project from all interested parties. This request for comments is open to all, including telecommunications operators, data centre operators, cable suppliers, investors and the authorities. The deadline for the comments is 22 May 2013.

Finland is making preparations to notify the submarine cable project to the European Commission. We therefore hope that those submitting comments could provide us with information on other similar projects, if any, in the Baltic Sea area. We would also like to know if you are interested in contributing to the funding of the project, or in cooperating in the project in some other way

The Ministry of Transport and Communications of Finland has explored the opportunity of implementing a new, direct telecommunications connection between Finland and Germany via the Baltic Sea. By establishing a new route which provides an alternative to the current link running through Sweden, the purpose is to improve the operational reliability of Finland's international data traffic connections.

A business plan is currently under preparation, looking into different ways of financing the project. No option has yet been excluded. One possibility is that the cable would be owned and operated by a state-owned company, and the Finnish Government would contribute to the project by providing a capital injection to this state-owned submarine cable company.

The opportunities of implementing the Baltic Sea backbone cable have been examined for the past two years. A feasibility study on the technical and financial perspectives of the project was completed in summer 2012, indicating that the construction of the cable would cost some EUR 50 million. According to preliminary plans, the cable would comprise 6-8 fibre optic pairs. No decision has yet been made on the implementation of the cable or its construction timetable; however, the aim would be to build it in 2014-2015.