The first half of 2014 saw the submarine fiber optics market surge to its highest demand for new cable in six years.

This is the conclusion of the mid-year update to TSC’s annual Radar Screen Report (RSR), which analyzes the demand for submarine fiber optic cable based on new contract awards.

For the previous five years, the Radar Screen Report™ identified steady demand, rather than the traditional boom and bust pattern that had been a staple of the market since its inception. This steady-growth period was caused by various pressures pushing the market up, while similarly strong pressures pushed it down, keeping it to a steady middle ground. The result was an annual demand between 40,000 and 50,000 route-kilometers between the years 2009 and 2013 – far from a complete bust but not high enough for the industry to thrive.

TSC’s 2014 Radar Screen Report, published in January, noted slight changes in the landscape, particularly in the availability of financing, and correctly forecast the probability of breaking out from this steady-as-she-goes pattern to reach the highest levels of demand since the last boom in 2007-2008. The total number of route-kilometers contracted in the first half of 2014 is already greater than the average full-year totals during the previous five years.

RSR projections indicate the market is not likely to maintain this same momentum during the final two quarters of 2014 or in 2015. But the shifting dynamics and large number of cable projects in the development pipeline are positive indications that the market is, and should remain at least in the near term, healthy with the potential to thrive.

For more information about the 2014 TSC Radar Screen Report, go to http://www.subcableworld.com/radar-screen-report.

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