According to sources, a team of experts recently visited Gojal Valley to look at feasibility of the planned US$44 million project. The team reportedly examined the planned project area in Khunjerav and Sost.
The agreement for the Pak-China fiber-optic cable was signed between the two countries during the official visit of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to China in July. The contract for execution of the plan, which will be completed in two years, was subsequently awarded to China-based information and communications technology company Huawei.
Under the project, fiber-optic cable will run from Khunjerav to Rawalpindi, covering a distance of about 820 kilometers. It is pertinent to mention here that China has already laid down fiber-optic connection up to its border with Pakistan at Khunjerav.
Experts say that the fiber-optic connection will help resolve the Internet connectivity issues in Pakistan besides stimulating entrepreneurship and supporting businesses, tourism and ICT awareness. If implemented, the project will create new economic opportunities in Gilgit-Baltistan.
At present, Pakistan is connected to the World Wide Web through undersea cables. The new connection will reduce Internet downtime in Pakistan in case of damages in the undersea cables, which has been noted to happen quite frequently.