Russia set to play a crucial role in meeting high bandwidth demands


Russia is primed to become a critical connectivity route as the demand for intercontinental bandwidth between East and West continues to soar.

Eyes have been turning to Russia since the news broke that operators in the country were partnering with China Telecom Global (CTG) to help bring to fruition its Silk Road project. This project, when complete, will provide an ultra low latency terrestrial route across continents with the aim to meet the growing big-bandwidth demands for connectivity between Asia and Europe. It’s also part of China’s wider One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative to connect Asia to Europe, mirroring the historical concept of the Silk Road.

This wider project will be a real enabler for businesses who are looking to connect their organisation across regions and much like the ancient trading route, it is set to have significant global economic implications.

Russia isn’t just providing a pathway for global connectivity, data usage within the region is also set to grow substantially. According to Cisco’s Visual Network Index, business internet traffic in Russia is tipped to reach 1.1 Exabytes per month in 2021, up from 622 Petabytes per month in 2016.

This is putting increased focus on Western European aggregation points, realised by increased investment in data centres in the Nordic region. According to a report by BroadGroup, key internet players such as Google, Apple and Facebook are just some of the names laying down investments to the tune of €3.3billion in the region. This is just another way in which the GAAFMs of the world (Google, Apple, Amazon, Facebook, Microsoft) are looking to get ahead of not only the rise in global data and content demands, but specifically those going from East to West.

To enable the hotbed of data centre investment in the Nordics, Colt announced last year that it was bringing its Colt IQ Network to Helsinki. This was to ensure that Colt was in place to meet the burgeoning demand for high bandwidth connectivity between data centres and organisations in the region.

The importance and growth of Russia as a market and what this means for the wholesale telecommunications sector will be much discussed at Capacity Russia over the coming days. I am going to be on a panel session with Lixiong Hong, Director of Carrier Business, EMEA, at China Telecom Global, as well as leaders from GemNet and TTK just to name a few. This is Colt’s first time attending Capacity Russia and as a business we’re extremely interested in developments in a region primed and ready to become a key player in the global data boom.

The drive for greater bandwidth globally is why Colt announced late last year that it was upgrading and future proofing its transatlantic, transpacific and Asian subsea cable capacity to 100Gbps, globalising its high bandwidth strategy. Colt also revealed that it was also investing in its terrestrial network and partnership strategy by announcing that it was extending connectivity into North America to meet the local and global connectivity demands. This move aligns with Colt’s strategy of ensuring that wherever our customers are, and want to be, the company has dense, high bandwidth connectivity to meet their demands.

Because much like what is happening with CTG’s next-generation Silk Road, it is clear to Colt, that having high bandwidth intercontinental connections is crucial to ensuring economic growth, global market integration and enabling businesses to thrive in the digital landscape worldwide. But all these opportunities depend on secure, scalable and high bandwidth connectivity to critical data centres and clouds where the traffic is aggregated and forwarded. The Colt IQ Network connects you to all the key business hubs in Europe and Asia, enabling you to trade around the world.

Vlad Ihora is a Director for Colt’s Wholesale segment, working in the Major Deals Team.

To meet with Vlad at Capacity Russia, request a meeting here. Alternatively, you can hear him sharing his views on the future of wholesale during the keynote panel presentation at the conference – find out more information here.

For more information about the business opportunity for multinational expansion and how Colt can help drive such growth; click here.

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