By Julie Carrington
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (BGIS) -- Increased competition in the telecoms market is expected to play a major role in the Barbados government's strategy to bring the sector on par with the offerings in countries which are leaders in the sector.
Minister in the Prime Minister's Office, Senator Darcy Boyce, gave this undertaking last Friday night during the official launch of Karib Cable Barbados.
Underscoring the importance of the telecoms sector to all spheres of activity, the minister said that with the heavy use of telecommunications across the island, Barbadians "deserve and need to get access to competitive telecommunications".
"Part of the submission of Karib Cable's application for a licence to operate here in this industry, dealt with its intention to make sure that the whole country can get access to its services and, we shall hold the company to that commitment," Boyce added.
He also credited the company for using fibre optic cable which would "increase the speed and capacity of the telephone line and, therefore, bring better quality data carried over the infrastructure".
With this cable, Boyce said customers could expect better and clearer voice quality and faster transmission of data over the island's telecommunications structure.
Emphasising that the liberalisation of the local telecommunications industry had greatly advanced competition, the minister disclosed that a fourth player -- Columbus Communications -- would soon be entering the market.
Boyce said the company, along with Karib Cable, would contribute significantly to government's efforts to facilitate broadband services to Barbadians at an affordable rate.
"My hope is that Karib Cable will not be content with providing domestic networks. I expect that the company will soon, after completing the build-out of its domestic capacity, move into commissioning its own underground cable for overseas calling," he noted.
Meanwhile, the company's founder, Kelly Glass, said Karib Cable would provide jobs for 200 Barbadians in areas such as marketing, customer service and information technology. Already, 70 employees have been hired.
Karib Cable also operates in St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines and Antigua.