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Regulator visits site of American satellite manufacturer

Samoa can expect to benefit from a next-generation satellite which will stream high-speed low-cost broadband internet to Samoa next year.

The new satellite owned by private company Kacific Broadband Satellites Group (Kacific) is currently in its final testing phase before it is launched into orbit by SpaceX.

Telecommunications regulator, Lefaoali'i Unutoa Auelua-Fonoti, visit the satellite factory in U.S. state of California and was involved in discussions on how Samoa would benefit from satellite-supplied broadband internet economical and socially.

One of the roles of the Regulator's Office is to enhance the availability, accessibility and affordability of telecommunication services, with the Regulator saying having services offered by the new satellite enabled them to achieve this.

"Availability, Affordability and Accessibility of telecom services in Samoa is one of our office’s important policy goals," said Lefaoali'i.

"Having Kacific provide more competition and high-speed services to Samoa is part of our role to improve connectivity and the economic development of our country.” 

She highlighted that the new satellite will complement new developments in Samoa's telecommunications sector.

"Kacific services will complement the submarine cables and the terrestrial services that already exist in Samoa," she added. 

"This new satellite will support global communications, safety and emergency management and will enable us to achieve our objectives in new and innovative ways. 

"For me to view and witness the making of this next generation high speed satellite is a blessing.” 

Currently, Kacific is supplying satellite equipment as well as 12-months of free access to the internet for five schools in Samoa as part of the Pacific Satellite Connectivity Project. 

The project was signed between International Telecommunications Union (ITU) and the Samoan Government in 2014 as part of the Small Island Developing States conference.

The company focuses on connecting island communities in the Pacific Islands and South East Asia with affordable internet through small satellite dishes.

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