With much fanfare, the Costa Rican government inaugurated a new Pacific coast underwater cable that promises to deliver better and more reliable international telecommunications services for the nation.
“Public investment, in this day and age, does not only consist in improving routes that carry cargo from one country to another by truck or train,” said President Oscar Arias. “It’s also a matter of carrying information around the world.”
Gaps in digital technology produce greater social inequality than differences in infrastructure, he added.
The $33.5 million project, financed by the Costa Rican Electricity Institute (ICE), is based in Esterillos Este de Parrita in the central Pacific province of Puntarenas.
Named “Unqui,” the cable’s station is linked to another, called “Bribri,” in Limón on the Caribbean coast, where two other underwater cables are located.
The underwater cable is now part of the Pan-American Crossing network connecting the United States, Mexico, Panama, Venezuela and the Virgin Islands.
Adriana Víquez, chief press officer for ICE, said the Pacific coast cable will increase international telecommunications security because, should a natural disaster strike on the Caribbean coast, Costa Rica will not lose Internet, telephone or other.
Placing the cable underwater saves money and provides better connections than via satellite, according to ICE.