China telco giant wins big Chch fibre deal

Workers laying fibre optic cabling. Photo / supplied
Workers laying fibre optic cabling. Photo / supplied

Chinese telcommunications giant Huawei has scored its second major ultra-fast broadband contract and will supply equipment for the Christchurch leg of the internet scheme.

Enable Services, who is one of the Government's partner in the ultra-fast fibre rollout, said today it had signed an equipment, services and maintenance agreement with Huawei.

The multi-million dollar contract will extend Huawei's growing footprint in New Zealand and builds on a similar equipment agreement with Ultrafast Fibre Ltd (UFL) made last November.

UFL is the Government's partner in the ultra-fast broadband scheme for the central North Island.

The fibre lines laid as part of the UFB scheme will offer 75 per cent of New Zealanders download speeds of at least 100 megabits per second by the end of 2019.

This is over 20 times faster than the average speeds enjoyed by urban internet users in 2010.

The newly-split Chorus also signed an equipment deal with Huawei late last year, which will aid in the rollout of fibre lines in the rural broadband initiative (RBI).

The Government announced in April last year it would join with both Telecom and Vodafone in the internet initiative, which aims to offer more than 80 per cent of rural households internet speeds of at least five megabits per second over the next six years.

Within that time, 93 per cent of rural schools will also get internet speeds of 100 megabits per second.

After Telecom's split with network-arm Chorus last November, the infrastructure company will be responsible for the rollout of 3100km of fibre cables in rural New Zealand and Vodafone will build 154 cell towers providing fixed, wireless and mobile internet.

Huawei's technology was also used to build 2degrees' mobile infrastructure and last year it won a $140 million contract to extend 2degrees' network.

It also released a number of its own mobile phones into the market.

The Shenzhen-based company was founded in 1987 by Ren Zhengfei, a former officer in China's army and operates in more than 140 countries, touching a third of the world's population.

It opened offices in New Zealand in 2005.

- NZ Herald

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