After the US national security officials’ intervention, social media giant, Facebook, suspends its plans to lay more than 8,000 miles of fiber-optic cable between California and Hong Kong.
The Hong Kong-Americas (HKA) project was supposedly a mass-benefiting project for companies using the services.
In this regard, a Facebook spokesperson explained that the HKA project will be reconfigured following rising concerns of the US government:
Due to ongoing concerns from the U.S. government about direct communications links between the United States and Hong Kong, we have decided to withdraw our FCC application. We look forward to working with all the parties to reconfigure the system to meet the concerns of the U.S. Government.
The Hong Kong-Americas (HKA) Project
The HKA project was first introduced in 2018 between several US and China-based companies, including Facebook and China Telecom. The project’s goal was to lay the fiber-optic cable under the sea, connecting two sites in California with a site in Hong Kong and a site in Taiwan.
There’s a dire need for additional international bandwidth between the US and China. However, under the restraining orders, several undersea cable proposals have been removed by Facebook during the last six months.
In September 2020, Facebook retired its proposal for an undersea cable called the Pacific Light Cable Network (PLCN) due to the Trump administration’s national security interests. During that same month, the company also perished a proposal with Amazon to create the Bay to Bay Express Cable, which would link San Francisco with Hong Kong.
It is unlikely that we see any new undersea cable-related project until the situation between the US and China is improved.
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