South Pacific region sees Telstra enter the telecom sector
The Australian government has been keen to promote itself in the region as part of wider efforts to provide a counterweight to China and to Chinese telcos and vendors.
In mid-2021 the Australian government pressed Telstra to acquire Digicel Pacific, including the latter’s units in Fiji, Nauru, PNG, Samoa, Tonga, and Vanuatu. The $1.6 billion deal was agreed in the following October, with Telstra to contribute $270 million and the Australia government making a $1.33 billion contribution via Export Finance Australia (EFA).
- Australian government contributes $1.33 billion of the $1.6 billion cost for Telstra to acquire Digicel Pacific;
- Kacific-1 satellite improves the region’s international connectivity;
- Additional submarine cables come online, with more due in the next two years;
- GSM services still in widespread use in many Pacific Island countries;
- Fiji leading the way in both LTE deployment as well as 5G readiness;
Companies mentioned in this report include:
Kumul Telikom, Telikom PNG, PNG DataCo, Digicel, Amalgamated Telecom Holdings (ATH), Telecom Fiji (TFL), Fiji International Telecommunications (Fintel), Kacific Broadband Satellites, Southern Cross Cable Network (SCCN), Vodafone Fiji (VFL), Inkk Mobile, Unwired Fiji, Fintel Internet Services (Kidanet), Our Telekom (Breeze), Bmobile-Vodafone, O3b, Solomon Island Submarine Cable Company, Office des Postes et Télécommunications de Nouvelle-Calédonie (OPT-NC), Amper, Blue Sky Samoa, Telecom Vanuatu (TVL), Office des Postes et Télécommunications (OPT), Tahiti Nui Telecommunications, Galileo, Vini, Honotua Cable, Vodafone Polynesia.