The Future of Latin America's Subsea Cables: A Strategic Overview

March 18, 2024

The digital infrastructure of Latin America is on the brink of a major overhaul, with subsea cables playing a pivotal role in this transformation. A panel of industry experts, including CEOs, EVPs, and senior analysts, came together to discuss the future trajectory of these essential components of the global internet backbone. Here’s a closer look at the participants and the key takeaways from their discussion.


Gil Santaliz, CEO at NJFX
Maurice Traverso, EVP at Sparkle
Alexander Salomon, RVP Brazil Sales at Infineria
Enrique Lozoya, Network Investments Manager – Americas at META
Carmine Sorrentino, VP Chief Commercial and Operating Officer at Liberty Networks
Peter Wood, Senior Research Analyst at TeleGeography

 Key Takeaways:

  1. There’s a consensus on the urgent need to replace subsea cables that were built in 2002 and earlier. The industry is moving towards adopting new cables with advanced technology to ensure seamless connectivity between Latin America and North America.
  1. Simply upgrading the equipment of existing cables is insufficient. The panelists pointed out that new cables with higher fiber counts and technological advancements offer far superior performance, which is necessary to meet the increasing demand for data and bandwidth.
  1. Over-The-Top (OTT) providers are at the forefront of developing new subsea systems. Their efforts are expanding the network’s reach beyond Brazil to Argentina, Chile, and potentially Peru, showcasing a significant shift in infrastructure development and investment.
  1. Highlighting specific initiatives, Liberty Media, in collaboration with Gold Data, is working on expanding the US-Mexico and Central America subsea network. Their focus on reducing latency is critical for real-time data applications, enhancing the region’s connectivity.
  1. The responsibility falls on both users and operators to ensure their network’s resilience. Having access to multiple cables and backhaul options is essential for maintaining network uptime, emphasizing the need for robust infrastructure.
  1. The panel discussed the unpredictable impact of AI on network infrastructure and the growth of hyperscale data centers in Latin America. These data centers, increasingly powered by renewable energy, are poised to drive further demand for subsea cable expansion.

The discussions by these industry leaders offer a roadmap for the future of Latin America’s digital infrastructure. As the region gears up for a major transition, the focus on technological advancements, strategic partnerships, and sustainability will be key to ensuring its connectivity with the global digital economy.


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