By Stelios Orphanides
The EuroAsia Interconnector Ltd which plans to link the power grids of Cyprus with those of Greece and Israel via an undersea cable, said that the European Union agreed to finance the final detailed studies ahead of the implementation of the project with €14.5m.
The funding is part of the European Commission’s initiative to invest €444m in 18 priority European energy infrastructure projects, the company said in an emailed statement.
“The EuroAsia Interconnector is one of the seven selected electricity projects that have received funding and the only North-South electricity interconnection in the Central Eastern and South Eastern Europe Priority Corridor,” the statement said. “The project will contribute to achieving the Energy Union’s goals of connecting European energy networks, increasing security of energy supply, and contributing to the sustainable development by integrating renewable energy sources across the EU”.
The project, announced five years ago, provides linking Kofinou (Cyprus) with Hadera (Israel) and Korakia on the Greek island of Crete. Another undersea cable will link Korakia with Attica. The interconnector will have a capacity of 2,000 Megawatts.
“Pre-construction works will commence in 2017 and the completion of the first 1,000MW interconnection between Israel – Cyprus – Greece will take place in 2022,” the company said. “Enjoying the unwavering support of the governments of Cyprus, Greece and Israel, the project promoter is continuing unabated with the timely implementation of the EuroAsia Interconnector in accordance to the agreed schedules for all three steps of the 1520 km electricity highway”.
The EU has earmarked €5.4bn for its Connecting Europe Facility until 2020.