first optical fibre link between Latvia and Russia

Latvian electronic services provider Lattelecom and Russian national communications operator Synterra have launched the first commercial optical fiber link between Latvia and Russia.

At the same time, Lattelecom CEO Juris Gulbis and Synterra director general Vitaly Slizen signed a memorandum providing for increasing the speed of data transmission to 10 gigabits per second from the present 2.5 gigabits per second as part of further cooperation.

Citing history, Latvian Transport Minister Kaspars Gerhards told the press that new solutions in transport and communications is the only way out of the crisis. Speeding up transport and communications would also be one of the solutions to the current economic situation, the minister said, wishing the two companies to continue cooperation to the benefit of both Latvians and Russians.

Yevgeny Tihonov, the head of the commerce and economics department of the Russian embassy in Riga, said Latvia was a significant trade partner to Russia and that Russian investments continued to grow in Latvia. The representative of the embassy also noted that Latvia can also be a country of information transit.

Synterra head Slizen said, for his part, that the optical link could double or even triple the profit of both companies in the future. He said a year ago Lattelecom and Synterra signed an agreement on the interconnection, which was tested and completed two months ago, but that it was officially launched only now due to various formalities.

Lattelecom CEO Juris Gulbis underlined that the optical link between Latvia and Russia will be a significant improvement that will be felt by each resident of Latvia. The Lattelecom head noted that the company already operates 5,218 kilometers of optical cables, including 800 optical access cables providing connections to end-users, while the optical cable in Riga was 527 kilometers long.

In recent years, Lattelecom has laid 12 optical cables with telecommunications operators in neighboring countries, but that this is the first link with Russia.

The Latvian-Russian trans-border link will enhance the connectivity of the operators' trunk networks, optimize traffic routing to Europe, the Baltic states and Kaliningrad, as well as reduce telecommunications costs for clients.

Lattelecom provides integrated electronic communications and IT services, telecommunications services, network development and implementation, data transmission and IT infrastructure solutions, Internet, call-center and business process outsourcing services.

Synterra, meanwhile is a national communications operator in Russia uniting Synterra, PeterStar, Synterra-Ural, Global-Teleport and Teleport SPb, as well as a number of regional operators.

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