Prosperity and security of three countries and an entire continent
This is a special moment. A moment that marks four years of intense planning, hard work and determination. Today, the countries of Israel, Cyprus and Greece and the European Union celebrate another decisive step towards the realisation of a dream. A dream that in January of 2012 began as just three connecting lines on a map.
Since the EuroAsia Interconnector project was publicly announced, we have had to deal with many challenges. This is an enormous, multidimensional project that stretches the limits of technology, therefore necessary estimate adjustments and modifications of our original planning were dealt with several times. But we kept our determination, we focused on our goal and here we are today; acknowledged by the European Union as a Project of Common Interest (PCI). With the European Union’s support we have reached today’s milestone by assigning these three important studies to two world-known organisations.
We are happy to acknowledge that the EuroAsia Interconnector may become famous for its magnitude and advanced technology, but what is at the heart of this project is the prosperity and security of three countries and an entire continent.
The project benefits are real and tangible. They are in line with the European and national energy policy and targets. They include a significant reduction in CO2 emissions, integration of Renewable Energy Sources and increased security of supply.
Most importantly, the project ends the energy isolation of Cyprus, the only member of the European Union that remains fully isolated without electricity interconnection. At the same time, it is important to note that the EuroAsia Interconnector ends the energy isolation of Crete and Israel.
The project will essentially create an electricity highway between Israel-CyprusCrete-Attica, with an uninterrupted, multidirectional flow of energy.
From early on, the European Union acknowledged the significance of the project by including it in the first list of PCIs. Furthermore, the positive assessment of the project’s socioeconomic benefits by ENTSOE lead to the project’s inclusion in the European Ten-Year Network Development Plan 2014-2020. We are very proud that the EuroAsia Interconnector has been included in the second PCI list and is among the few projects suggested for inclusion in the Electricity Highway programme.
Carrying out a project of this magnitude demands a team of people dedicated, committed and well organised. It also requires close cooperation with all involved organisations, authorities and highly specialised external consultants. The Project Team and I are grateful for this close and smooth cooperation and their support which enabled us bring the project to this maturity level. I can assure you that, we will continue implementing this project with appropriate diligence and a high level of responsibility respecting the European and National Regulations.
Following the approval for funding from the Connecting Europe Facility an international competition was announced and uploaded to the EU’s website. The competition carried out with complete transparency and attracted the interest of 35 International well known organisations. We are grateful and would like to thank each and every one of them.
We would like to congratulate Gianluca Marini, Solutions and Services Division Director of CESI for the technical and technological study and the environmental studies, and Pietro Basciano, CEO of G.A.S. for the reconnaissance survey . We are certain that these companies will not only meet our standards but also add considerable value to this project as they have previous experience in the area of HVDC submarine interconnections.
After the completion of these studies we can proceed forward to the pre-works phase which leads to the implementation of this project. This will be our next move.