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Rodney Taylor to visit the French territories

PORT OF SPAIN: The governments of Guadeloupe, St. Barts and St. Martin will receive a delegation this month led by Mr. Rodney Taylor, Secretary General of the Caribbean Telecommunications Union (CTU).

During his stay in the territories, Mr. Taylor will pay courtesy calls on Mr. Ary Chalus, President of the Regional Council of Guadeloupe, Mr. Xavier Lédée, President of the Collectivity of St. Barts, and Mr. Louis Mussington, President of the Collectivity of St. Martin.

The visits of the Secretary General are part of the CaribIX initiative, recently launched and coordinated by the CTU. The CaribIX project aims to set up Internet exchange points in the three territories.

“We are proud to be an integral part of this CARIBIX project, which directly supports the ongoing quest to develop a reliable and resilient Internet infrastructure in the Caribbean,” said Taylor.

Through the CaribIX project and this particular visit by the CTU team, Guadeloupe, St. Barts and St. Maarten will have access to the expertise of the Caribbean Network Operators Group (CaribNOG), which will be conducting strategic consultations in the three territories from April 19 to 28, to provide technical advice on the implementation and operation of the new Internet Exchange Points.

This Caribix initiative marks a major step forward for the Caribbean Internet landscape. Since 2006, the CTU has been promoting the establishment and operation of Internet Exchange Points throughout the region. There are now twelve (12) IXPs in the Caribbean and hundreds more around the world.

An Internet Exchange Point, or IXP, is an infrastructure that allows Internet operators to interconnect their networks in order to exchange traffic locally without the need for costly international infrastructure (submarine cables). By creating new Internet Exchange Points in Guadeloupe, St. Barts and St. Martin, the CaribIX project promises to improve the speed, security and quality of Internet services in these three territories.

The new Internet exchange points will help ensure that consumers’ domestic Internet traffic stays on the island. In St. Barts, for example, this increase in local routing of network traffic is expected to result in tangible improvements in network performance, thereby enhancing the Internet and telecommunications service experience of island users.

On Sint Maarten, the ability to create a digital bridge to the existing Internet infrastructure on Sint Maarten will facilitate the exchange of traffic between the islands. A strengthened national network also means increased resiliency in the event of a natural disaster such as a hurricane, which can result in the failure of international facilities.

This latest collaboration between CTU, local governments, participating network operators and other stakeholders is expected to produce other tangible benefits. The CaribIX project aims to foster social and economic development on the islands, as IXPs can facilitate the development of local content and other digital innovations. In Guadeloupe, for example, the imminent establishment of an Internet exchange point will contribute to digital transformation and facilitate digital entrepreneurship.

The CaribIX project received funding from the INTERREG Caribbean program, which is co-financed by the European Union’s European Regional Development Fund. It was officially launched in a virtual ceremony on March 21 and is expected to run until October 2022.

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