The Asia-America Gateway (AAG) cable system
AAG is a 20,000 kilometre submarine communications cable system connecting South-East Asia with the US mainland across the Pacific via Guam and Hawaii. It connects with Vietnam through Vung Tau City and has been in operation since November 2009.
According to Vietnam Posts and Telecommunications Group (VNPT), the repair work will be carried out from February 25 to March 3. During this time, the international connection speeds will be down, making it difficult to access to foreign websites and send emails to addresses on foreign servers.
The deputy director of VNPT’s Vietnam Data Communication Company (VDC), Nguyen Hong Hai, said the repair should have been conducted earlier, but has been delayed to next week.
He added that VNPT has prepared measures to help maintain connectivity during the repair.
Vu The Binh, General Director of Netnam, has been cited by Buu Dien Vietnam Newspaper as saying that AAG is the sub-marine cable that has experienced the most problems over the last five years, causing interruptions of two to three months in total. It is also the most used and cheapest connection in the country.
Even with the repair, Vietnamese internet service providers cannot guarantee that connection problems will not occur in the future. Many users have been warned that they may experience troubles.
Binh also warned that the consequences of a major cable accident might be more serious than initially thought. One such incident occurred on a weekend, when the demand was low. However, things may be different if it were to happen on a Monday.
“These accidents serve as a reminder to Vietnam of the importance of our information infrastructure,” Binh commented.
The Asia-America Gateway cable linear reportedly broke on December 20, 2013, affecting 40 percent of Vietnam’s international traffic. The problem was fixed on January 4.