NEW DELHI, Sept 15: Domestic optical fibre firm Paramount Cables expects undersea cable business to generate up to Rs 3,000 crore revenue opportunity in Indian market in next five years, a senior company official said.
The company also sees that high speed data and advent of 5G will exponentially push demand for undersea cables, connecting telecom networks of various nations.
“We have about talks of Bharatmala that is submarine ring around India connecting major ports. These projects are very good for the nation if fructified. We are looking at revenue of Rs 2,000-3,000 crore revenue opportunity in coming 5 years for the sector,” Paramount Cables Managing Director Dhruv Aggarwal told PTI.
Paramount has become the first Indian company to repair and lay submarine optical fibre, and is looking to build capacity in the country to capitalise upon various opportunities that exist in the segment.
The company repaired and laid down submarine cable connection between India and Sri Lanka, Bharat Lanka Cable System, last month in the Bay of Bengal – on the sea bed near Tuticorin.
Paramount was roped in by Japanese firm NEC, which bagged the contract from BSNL, in November 2018 to repair the cable system and cement it in rock trenches on the sea bed for 5.1 kilometers near Tuticorin in Tamil Nadu. The company repaired the cable system in February 2019 and cemented it on sea bed in August 2019.
Aggarwal said that some of the foreign divers were paid up to USD 5000 or about Rs 3.5 lakh per day, which can be done by trained Indian divers at around one-tenth of the cost.
“Now, we are developing Indian divers who can do similar kind of work. This will ensure we are able to keep dollars within the country. Lot of job opportunities are coming up for multiple people, like divers, engineers, network expert. This area is going to balloon with 5G. Submarine cables have to be installed to that capacity to be able to exploit 5G,” Aggarwal said.
He said that Facebook, Netflix, Amazon, and Google are looking directly to invest in submarine cable connecting the whole world.
“There are talks of finalisation of setting up cable between Bombay, Chennai and Singapore. Those projects are coming. Andaman and Nicobar islands are being connected by the government. With this (BSLC) project we have developed skill sets to handle submarine cables,” Aggarwal said.
India has no dearth of sea divers but they need to be trained to work on submarine cable projects, he added.
“We need to improve our indigenous capability year-on-year. right now under the leadership of NEC, we are doing installation work of submarine cable for Chennai and Andaman project,” Aggarwal said. (PTI)