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  Yiannis Koulias, Manager National & International Wholesale Market
  Yiannis Koulias, Manager National & International Wholesale Market

Cyta Strengthens its Telecommunications Hub in the Eastern Mediterranean

By Mr Yiannis Koulias, Director, National & International Wholesale Market, Cyta

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Cyta (Cyprus Telecommunications Authority) is the primary telecommunications provider in the Republic of Cyprus. The company is a customer-driven enterprise operating in a competitive market and provides the full spectrum of advanced telecommunications products and services. Cyta is a major provider of fixed and mobile communications and the major Internet Service Provider in Cyprus. It also offers broadband access via ADSL and was among the first providers to bundle this technology with IPTV. The company has solid finances with long term profitability and expanding turnover.

Cytaglobal, is the International Wholesale Division of Cyta and is a semi-autonomous strategic business unit, specialising in providing global electronic communication products and services. Cyta, through Cytaglobal, is active in the international market and provides products and services to telecommunications operators and business customers around the world. Cyta operates a state-of-the-art telecommunications network and has an impressive submarine cable and satellite teleport infrastructure. The company couples a strategically situated telecommunications gateway in Cyprus with POPs in major telecommunications centers in Europe.

Taking advantage of the island’s privileged geographical location at the crossroads of three continents the company’s extensive submarine fibre optic cable network connects Cyprus with neighbouring countries and thereafter with the rest of the world. Cyta participates in various regional and global cable systems such as the SEA-ME-WE 3, which links Western Europe and South Eastern Asia, via the Mediterranean and the Middle East, and the MED NAUTILUS System which connects the Mediterranean with Western Europe and beyond. Cyta’s international telecommunications hub is further enhanced through the MINERVA cable subsystem, the first submersible ring connecting Cyprus and Europe directly.

In December 2010, Cyta and MedNautilus, announced a new sub-network system connecting Israel to France. MedNautilus is the Mediterranean operations of the Telecom Italia Sparkle Group and is the only telecommunication submarine cable ring in the Mediterranean since 2001. The MedNautilus network provides end-to-end connectivity from the eastern part of the Mediterranean to major destinations in Europe.

The TELMAR subsystem leverages the recently upgraded LEV cable, connecting Israel to Cyprus, provides new multiple wavelength links between Israel and France and represents a new connectivity option created to serve the growing need for diversification of the Israeli market. Cyta and MedNautilus intend to use existing Cyta’s MINERVA cable subsystem and MedNautilus cable facilities in addition to TI Sparkle’s Pan European Backbone to offer protection to TELMAR. To this perspective, the parties will upgrade the MINERVA subsystem with more 10Gbps wavelengths which will also be employed to increase Cyta’s current IP connectivity to TI Sparkle’s IP Backbone Seabone in Catania. Cyta and MedNautilus also intend to lit-up a new fiber of the MedNautilus system connecting Haifa to Pentaskhinos, in order to create the first fiber ring network between Israel and Cyprus.

Earlier in 2010, Cyta finalised an agreement with the Syrian Telecommunications Operator, STE and the Lebanese Telecommunications Operator, OGERO, for the upgrade of the existing submarine cable systems UGARIT, BERYTAR and CADMOS, forming a high-capacity resilient ring connecting Cyprus with its two neighbouring countries.

In June 2009, Cyta and Telecom Egypt announced their agreement to cooperate through extension of Telecom Egypt’s TEN submarine cable system to Cyprus, thereby creating reciprocal Eurasia and Eastern Mediterranean business opportunities. As part of this strategic cooperation, Cyta acquired ALEXANDROS subsystem consisting of a fiber-pair connecting Cyprus to Egypt and a fiber-pair connecting Cyprus to France. ALEXANDROS subsystem complements existing Cyta’s international facilities, enhancing the robustness of international access through physical diversity and significant increase in bandwidth.

Cyta also operates an extensive satellite network consisting of two separate teleport sites with a complement of more than 25 satellite earth stations, providing connectivity with Intelsat, Eutelsat, SES World Skies, AsiaSat, ABS, Arabsat and other major satellite systems. The company shares multiyear experience in satellite communications as it has been running satellite services since 1980. Services offered via Cyta’s satellite teleports include a broad collection of products ranging from satellite television on permanent and occasional basis, to international telephony, monitoring services, data and internet connectivity. The teleports also offer VSAT services, hosting services to third parties and serve as a video head-end for Cyta’s IPTV offering in the Cyprus market.

After Cyprus accession in the European Union, Cyprus has now become Europe’s furthermost border in the Eastern Mediterranean. Cyta aims to become the Telecommunications Bridge between East and West and an excellent centre of telecommunications services in the broader Easter Mediterranean region.

Landing at Pentaskhinos, Cyprus
Landing at Pentaskhinos, Cyprus

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