Last week, a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed to formally establish cooperation between Samoa’s Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (MCIT) and the American Samoa Telecommunications Authority (ASTCA) (MOU).
After months of cooperation and numerous meetings between the two government agencies, the initiative has been successful thanks to the leadership of Samoa’s MCIT Minister, Hon. Toelupe Poumulinuku Onesemo, and ASTCA Chief Executive, Falelimu Chuck Leota.
The MOU backs initiatives that make sure our engineering and broadband issues are met with the demands of our citizens competing in the new, global digital economy.
Hon. Toelupe Poumulinuku stated that Samoa and American Samoa “should be well connected by the most advanced telecommunication means and leverage our geographic proximity to our shared advantage.”
Together, we can more quickly provide our people with the tools and resources they need to participate in a digitally globalized economy while reducing the impact of natural disasters and climate change.
Savalalo’s Hanky Company Limited next to Treasure Box inside Chandra House.
The Minister emphasized the significance of implementing policies that will increase our human resources’ capacity for a highly educated digital society.
“Where, through a synergistic approach, digital transformation is brought to people, society, and governments. Whereby addressing some of the more urgent social-economic concerns, it will have a direct impact on the lives of all Samoans and American Samoans.
In order for us to succeed, we must create a highly educated digital society. By cooperating, our people can take advantage of one another’s strengths and more effectively bring about digital transformation, which would address many social-economic issues that affect not just business and government, but the entire society, according to Toelupe.
The MOU’s programs are intended to increase collaboration and resource sharing in the areas of local engineering capability, network resilience, and broadband infrastructure.
With the help of the MOU, American Samoa and Samoa will be better able to stay connected and relevant in the emerging digital economy.
In order to guarantee and maximize the delivery of digital equity to all residents of the Samoan Archipelago, both East and West, the collaboration includes a proposed submarine fiber optic cable that is “to be contained by the government and not for profit.”
The current administration of American Samoa, according to ASTCA CEO Chuck Leota, wants every citizen of the territory to have affordable high-speed access to online information, including tools for participating fully in modern consumerism and the new digital economy without having to travel outside of American Samoa.
Leota declares, “These are exciting times.” In terms of policy and practical application, ASTCA and MCIT share the same goal: improving the standard of living and quality of life for our citizens by ensuring they not only participate in but also prosper in the new, global digital economy. I am confident that ASTCA and MCIT can take the lead and present solutions for our people to succeed with the support of the Honorable Ministers.
Leota claims that the government of American Samoa wants to guarantee that ASTCA aids our aiga in Samoa with our surplus broadband capacity from the Hawaiki cable.
The Hawaiki is a fiber optic cable that connects Hawaii, American Samoa, Australia, New Zealand, and the US West Coast. It went into service in July 2018. It provides numerous service and financial advantages for Content and Cloud service providers, Telcos, and ISPs due to its independent ownership and carrier neutrality. Its design capacity of 67 Tbps is unmatched.
The leading provider of ICT solutions in Samoa.
The following areas of focus are covered by the MCIT-ASTCA MOU:
- Installation of a submarine cable
- In the case of American Samoa, the cable connecting the island of Tutuila and the
Upolu island in Samoa would guarantee the primary submarine the necessary redundancy.
American Samoa and the US mainland are connected by cable
- The cable would increase Samoa’s capacity and improve its quality, and significantly lower service costs and increase citizen access to digital equity;
- A microwave backhaul solution for additional telecom and broadband redundancy during emergencies between Tutuila and Upolu;
- Knowledge, resource, and emergency inventory sharing and training.