PARIS, July 6 -- France Telecom has extended its European Backbone Network with the opening of a new loop connecting Frankfurt, Antwerp, Rotterdam and Amsterdam. The expansion keeps in pace with the network's processing plan to establish 28 Points of Presence by the end of 2000, the company said. Additions to the network will be available in Copenhagen, Denmark and in major cities in Germany, Switzerland and Italy, as well as in other markets throughout Europe, the company said. By the end of 2001, the network will stretch 20,000 kilometers in 16 countries, said France Telecom. The European Backbone Network will also link with the national and regional backbones of each of France Telecom's affiliated national operators -- making the network available in more than 250 cities throughout Europe.On the global level, the network will connect more than 800 cities in over 40 countries by interconnecting with major submarine cables, such as SEA-ME-WE 2 and 3, Ariane 2, TAT-13 and TAT-14. The European Backbone Network will combine with Global One's network to provide a seamless, self-healing backbone capable of supporting all kinds of information traffic -- from global to local -- based on synchronous digital highway, dense wavelength division multiplexing, indium phosphide, asynchronous transfer mode and Frame Relay technology, said France Telecom.