The Expert Appraisal Committee under the Ministry of Forests has recommended Coastal Regulatory Zone (CRZ) clearance for the 8,100-KM long Myanmar/Malaysia-India-Singapore Transit (MIST) Submarine Cable System connecting Mumbai and Chennai in India.
MIST is an international submarine cable communication network. Cable will traverse undersea to connect India with other Asian countries such as Myanmar, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore.
MIST cable system will provide secure reliable, robust and affordable telecom facilities in Asia. The main trunk route is from Tuas (Singapore) to Mumbai (India), the EAC said in its minutes of meeting held on July 6.
“The Committee after detailed deliberations and considering the submissions made by the project proponent recommended the proposal for CRZ clearance, subject to the following conditions,” it said, separately for Chennai and Mumbai.
The EAC recommended the CRZ clearance at Mumbai and also Chennai with some conditions.
In case of Mumbai, the Committee cautioned the project proponent, NTT Communications India Network Services Pvt Ltd, that the cable laying and associated facilities shall not hinder fishing activity in the area and necessary precautions and awareness shall be made.
The EAC also suggested that considering increasing number of international cables landing in the Chennai coast, the government shall make appropriate corridor for laying of such cables in the coastal area for better management and to avoid conflict with other stakeholders.
In a press release in December 2019, NTT said the total cost of the MIST project was pegged at USD 400 million.