Proposal responds to 2011 Arctic Communications Infrastructure Assessment Report's key findings and recommendations by expanding and modernizing the broadband infrastructure serving Nunavut, the Northwest Territories and the Yukon
OTTAWA, Feb. 2, 2012 /CNW/ - Telesat, Canada's premiere satellite services provider, announced today a proposal to remedy gaps and shortcomings in the communications infrastructure serving the North that were identified in the Arctic Communications Infrastructure Assessment (ACIA) Report prepared for the Northern Communications & Information Systems Working Group and sponsored by the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency. Under Telesat's proposal, called the "Arctic Communications Infrastructure Initiative", Telesat commits to make a substantial investment, in the context of a broader public/private partnership, in a robust, stable and affordable communications network that will meet the needs of the Northern communities over the next decade. Specifically, Telesat estimates it will cost $160 million to provide the additional communications infrastructure to meet the requirements outlined in the Report for the next ten years. Telesat is prepared to invest approximately $40 million, or 25% of the estimated total project cost, toward the initiative in both satellite bandwidth and ground segment upgrades.
The Arctic Communications Infrastructure Initiative would more than double the satellite bandwidth available for broadband in the North and, moreover, provides a practical and near term plan for upgrading the communications infrastructure that is so urgently needed across the Arctic to ensure that every community has redundant and robust communications facilities to prevent service disruptions. Telesat estimates that, once approved, the project could be implemented in less than 12 months' time.
"Telesat has been serving the North for 40 years and is deeply committed to ensuring that Northern communities have access to a broadband communications infrastructure that is on par with that which exists in Southern Canada," said Paul Bush, Telesat's Vice President, Business Development. "Our Arctic Communications Infrastructure Initiative will more than double the communications capacity serving the Arctic, provide urgently needed network redundancy in every Northern community, and put in place the long term funding required to ensure this modern and robust network is in place for at least the next ten years. Telesat is committing to invest 25% of the project cost for this important initiative and looks forward to working with other interested parties to ensure that those living and working in the North have access to a state-of-the art robust and broadband communications infrastructure, an infrastructure that is essential for Canada's safety, sovereignty and security and the economic prosperity of the Arctic communities."
Telesat formally submitted its Arctic Communications Infrastructure Initiative to the co-chairs of the Northern Communications & Information Systems Working Group that led the development of the ACIA Report.
About Telesat (www.telesat.com)
Telesat is a leading global fixed satellite services operator providing reliable and secure satellite-delivered communications solutions worldwide to broadcast, telecom, corporate and government customers. Headquartered in Ottawa, Canada, with offices and facilities around the world, the company's state-of-the-art fleet consists of 12 satellites plus the Canadian Ka-band payload on ViaSat-1 and two more satellites under construction. Telesat also manages the operations of additional satellites for third parties. Privately held, Telesat's principal shareholders are Canada's Public Sector Pension Investment Board and Loral Space & Communications Inc. (NASDAQ: LORL).
Forward-Looking Statements Safe Harbor
This news release contains statements that are not based on historical fact and are "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. When used in this news release, the words "estimates", "will", "would", "could" or other variations of these words or other similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements and information. Actual results may differ materially from the expectations expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements as a result of known and unknown risks and uncertainties. Detailed information about some of the known risks and uncertainties is included in the "Risk Factors" section of Telesat Canada's Annual Report on Form 20-F for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2010 filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), as well as Telesat Canada's quarterly reports on Form 6-K and other filings with the SEC. These filings can be obtained on the SEC's website at http://www.sec.gov. Known risks and uncertainties include but are not limited to: risks associated with operating satellites and providing satellite services, including satellite construction or launch delays, launch failures, in-orbit failures, impaired satellite performance or inability to restore capacity and risks associated with domestic and foreign government regulation. The foregoing list of important factors is not exhaustive. The information contained in this news release reflects Telesat's beliefs, assumptions, intentions, plans and expectations as of the date of this news release. Except as required by law, Telesat disclaims any obligation or undertaking to update or revise the information herein.
For further information:
Gerry Nagler, Telesat +1 908 698-4907 ([email protected])