“The volume of traffic, which is being transited through Europe Persia Express Gateway (EPEG) to Iran, will be increased next year.” This statement was made by the director general of the company “Delta Telecom” Ramazan Valiyev during his interview with journalists. He said that necessary equipment has already been bought by the company to that end. “For several years, Iran was not able to upgrade its EPEG segment because of the international sanctions, which prohibited Iran from buying modern telecommunication equipment. And now that the sanctions have been lifted, work is underway in Iran by the company “Alcatel Lucent” to install necessary equipment, upgrade the main cable line and put the alternative cable line into full operation in the first quarter of next year.” According to Ramazan Valiyev, today, Azerbaijan transits 700 GB traffic through the EPEG cable main line.
Note that EPEG is a brand new high capacity fiber optic cable system which links Europe with Middle East and a possibility of further extension to Gulf regional countries and India subcontinent.
On June 8th 2011 a consortium of four leading telecom carriers from four countries signed the Construction and Maintenance Agreement for the new cable system — Europe-Persia Express Gateway (EPEG). The new system with an initial capacity of 540 (54×10) Gbps was put in operation in December, 2012.
The system passes from Frankfurt across Eastern Europe, Russia, Azerbaijan, Iran and Persian Gulf to Barka, Sultanate of Oman. EPEG members Cable & Wireless, Rostelecom, Omantel, and TIC build and develop part of the network which operates through their own country. The route via Azerbaijan is organized on the basis of the capacity of the EPEG associated partner — Delta Telecom. The design capacity of the EPEG system is up to 3.2 Tbps with total length approx. 10,000 km, about 9,500 km is a terrestrial fibre cable.
The EPEG allows a telecommunication transit route alternative to the Red Sea, Suez Canal, Egypt and the Mediterranean Sea regions and plays an important role for traffic re-routing in case of earthquakes and disasters, which have been known to affect multiple systems at once. Azerbaijan is represented at the consortium by the company Delta Telecom.