PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad. May 23, 2022—The governments of Guadeloupe, St. Barthélemy and St. Martin received courtesy visits from Mr. Rodney Taylor, Secretary-General of the Caribbean Telecommunications Union (CTU).
A CTU delegation headed by Mr. Taylor visited Mr. Jean Claude Nelson, Vice-President of the Regional Council of Guadeloupe, H.E. Xavier Lédée, President of the Collectivité of Saint Barthelemy, and H.E. Louis Mussington, President of the Collectivité of Saint Martin. The Secretary-General’s visits come under the auspices of the recently launched CaribIX initiative, coordinated by the CTU.
“The CTU is honoured to be the implementing partner of the CaribIX project. This initiative signals a major step forward for the Caribbean Internet landscape. Since 2006, the CTU has been building resilient networks by promoting the establishment and operation of internet exchange points or IXPs throughout the region.” said Mr. Taylor.
The CaribIX project aims to set up Internet exchange points in the three territories. The objective is to foster social and economic development in the islands, and to contribute to digital transformation and facilitate digital entrepreneurship in Guadeloupe.
“The CaribIX project is just the beginning. The Regional Council of Guadeloupe looks forward to strengthening collaboration with the CTU to promote the acceleration of digital transformation in Guadeloupe in the future. ” said Mr. Jean-Claude Nelson, 9th Vice-President, Regional Council of Guadeloupe.
An Internet exchange point is a piece of physical infrastructure that allows network operators to interconnect and exchange traffic locally without having to resort to expensive international routes. By setting up new Internet exchange points in Guadeloupe, Saint Barthélemy and Saint Martin, the CaribIX project promises to deliver better Internet speed, security and service quality across the three territories.
In Saint Barthélemy, the increase in the local routing of network traffic is expected to translate into tangible improvements in network performance, thus improving the experience of the island’s users of Internet and telecommunications services.
“The CaribIX project heralds a major step in improving the quality of Internet service on the island. The installation of the IXP will enhance end users’ experience and stimulate the digital economy on the island.” said Mr. Lédée.
In Saint Martin, the possibility of creating a digital bridge to existing Internet infrastructure in Sint Maarten will facilitate inter-island traffic exchange.
“The Collectivité of Saint Martin supports the CaribIX initiative as this project will redound to the economic development of this island. The implement of an IXP will also facilitate inter-island traffic with Sint Maarten.” said Mr. Mussington.
This CaribIX initiative signals 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 IXPs in the Caribbean and hundreds of others across the world.
Through the CaribIX project, an IXP implementation team from the CTU also visited Guadeloupe, Saint Barthélemy and Saint Martin from May 2 to 12, to conduct strategic consultations in all three territories, in order to provide technical guidance on setting up and growing the new Internet exchange points. The team was headed by Mr Gary Kalloo, Business Development Manager, CTU.
“One of the advantages of having an IXP in a country is that it creates an opportunity to attract major web investors,” said Mr. Kalloo.
The CaribIX project received funding from the INTERREG Caraïbes programme, co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund of the European Union. It was formally launched in a virtual ceremony on March 21 and is expected to run until October 2022.