Cyprus Mail

Euroasia Interconnector ‘very important’ for Cyprus, spokesman says

Map of the route of the EuroAsia interconnector system

The issue of the EuroAsia Interconnector is not closed and negotiations are continuing, government spokesman Prodromos Prodromou was quoted as saying on Sunday.

In a statement to ANA-MPA regarding the electricity interconnection between Greece and Cyprus via Crete, Prodromou said the project was very important for Cyprus, not only for the development of the electricity market but also for the security of supply on the island. “The interconnection will be financed by [EU] Community funds and is therefore feasible. There is a technical problem with some decisions in Greece that we hope to find a solution to that will not cancel out the possibility of its construction,” he said.

The Cyprus-Greece interconnection, which has been designated by the Commission as a project of common interest for the European Union, includes the interconnection of Crete with Attica on the mainland. However, according to CNA, the interconnection with Cyprus could see a two-year delay while the Greek side is completing the interconnection between Crete and Attica, reports said.

The cost of the interconnection between Crete and Attica is estimated at 1 billion euros and the project is expected to become operational by the end of 2022.

In January this year, the tender documents for the four contracts – worth a combined €3.5bn – for the design and construction of the EuroAsia Interconnector were published in the official journal of the EU.

The EuroAsia Interconnector is labelled as an ‘electricity highway’ by the European Commission, connecting the national grids of Israel, Cyprus and Greece (Crete-Attica) and creating an energy bridge between the continents of Asia and Europe allowing bi-directional transmission of electricity.

According to EuroAsia Interconnector Limited, the project promoter, the project drew the attention of all major high-voltage direct-current (Hvdc) converter manufacturers and all major Hvdc Cable manufacturers and installers, who requested to participate in the tender for the construction of the electricity interconnection.

The pre-selection phase has been completed and all candidates have been notified about the decision regarding their request to participate in the procedure.

The estimated budget of €3.5bn concerns stage 1 of the project, designed for a transmission capacity of 1,000 megawatts.

Upon full deployment the transmission capacity will be 2,000 MW. The doubling of the capacity will be achieved either through modifications to the converters or by laying a second cable.

Stage 1 comprises one contract for the four converters to be built in Israel, Cyprus, Crete and Attica (Greece); plus three more contracts for the submarine cables and land cables for the three links – Israel to Cyprus, Cyprus to Crete, and Crete to Attica.

The first two segments to be built are the internal line between Korakia, Crete and the Attica region, expected to go operational in June 2022; and the interconnection between Kofinou, Cyprus and Crete, to be completed by December 2023.

It’s understood that the EU is funding the Cyprus to Crete link to the tune of 50 per cent.

The funds will be paid to the respective energy regulators in Cyprus and Greece.

The remaining 50 per cent will be raised by EuroAsia Interconnector Limited investors.

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