CODETEL CAIS Internet to construct Latin America's first Internet network access point. Facility to serve as on-line gateway for theCaribbean, Central and South America.

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STAMFORD, Conn. -- CODETEL, the principal telecommunications company in the Dominican Republic, and CAIS Internet, a division of CGX Communications, today announced plans to construct the first Internet network access point (NAP) to serve the growing needs of Internet customers in the Caribbean and Central and South America. CODETEL is owned and operated by GTE Corp.

Network access points, or Internet network traffic exchange facilities, connect national and regional Internet service providers to each other over high-speed links and switches. NAPS function like local area network (LAN) switches in which all the components on the Internet connect together to exchange network data at high speeds.

The new regional Internet network access point will be called the Latin Internet Exchange (LIX), and will be located in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. The LIX will be fully operational by June.

"Internet traffic in the Caribbean and Central and South America is growing at an explosive rate," said Ernst Burri, president-CODETEL. "The creation of new network access points like the Latin Internet Exchange is critical to the long-term growth and stability of the Internet."

The majority of Internet traffic generated today in the Caribbean, Central and South America is intra-regional in nature. However, because there currently is no network access point in Latin America, traffic must first travel to a U.S.-based network access point, then return to recipients in Latin America.

"The Latin Internet Exchange will dramatically improve how Internet traffic is handled in this fast-growing sector of the world," Burri added. "Most importantly, the LIX will improve service for Latin American customers, lower costs for Internet service and content providers, and create new growth opportunities for regional businesses."

"CAIS Internet is delighted to be working with CODETEL, which has seven decades of outstanding service in Latin America," said Ronald Burleson, chief operating officer of CGX Communications. "The LIX is a world-class facility that offers an extraordinary opportunity for aggregation of regional traffic for Internet service and content providers alike."

CODETEL Network Operations Center To Monitor LIX

CODETEL's award-winning Network Operations Center in Santo Domingo will control and monitor the new network access point. The LIX will utilize Cisco 7513 routers and DEC GIGAswitch technology offering connection rates up to 155 Mbps (OC-3). In addition, the LIX features connections to multiple high-speed undersea fiber optic cables and three Intelsat satellites.

To make the LIX content rich with very fast access, CODETEL has begun seeking commitments from hundreds of regional Internet service providers to connect to the new facility.

"The Dominican Republic's long history of friendliness to business and stability of democracy serve to enhance the opportunities created by the establishment of this new network access point," said Ed Serpe, director-Internet Business Group at CODETEL. "For the past 70 years, CODETEL has provided cutting-edge services in the region, and the creation of the LIX is further proof of our commitment to serving the telecommunication needs of Latin America."


CODETEL is a wholly owned subsidiary of GTE Corp., headquartered in Stamford, Conn. With revenues of more than $21 billion in 1996, GTE is one of the largest publicly held telecommunications companies in the world. CODETEL has the largest geographical coverage in the Dominican Republic as well as the most extensive product portfolio in the Dominican telecommunications market. Its product portfolio includes: local service, long distance, cellular, pagers and data products including Internet. CODETEL services 97 percent of the local telephone service market and between 70 and 80 percent in all other product categories.

GTE is actively engaged in many notable areas of the Internet including interactive business directories, Internet access, secure Internet transactions, modem aggregation support for Internet service providers and high-speed access service. In March, GTE became the first U.S.-based local exchange carrier to attain more than 100,000 Internet subscribers.

About CAIS

CAIS Internet, a McLean, Va.-based company, is one of the preeminent first-tier Internet companies serving businesses, government, non-profit institutions and individual customers. As many as 500,000 customers access the Internet through CAIS Internet. CAIS Internet was acquired by CGX Communications in May 1996 and is the underlying access and services provider to more than 50 U.S.-based Internet service providers, with dedicated connections to 16 international Internet service providers in the United Kingdom, Germany, Sweden, France, Hong Kong and the Caribbean.

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