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Cyprus and Egypt to connect electrical grids via underwater cable

Cyprus and Egypt to connect electrical grids via underwater cable

The energy ministers signed a memorandum of understanding on the project which is part of the planned Eastern Mediterranean Energy Corridor

Cyprus and Egypt have agreed to link their electricity networks via a power line under the Mediterranean. The memorandum of understanding for cooperation on the project was signed on Saturday in Nicosia by the Minister of Energy, Trade and Industry of the Republic of Cyprus Natasa Peleidou and the Minister of Electricity and Renewable Energy of the Arab Republic of Egypt Dr. Mohamed Shaker El – Markabi.

Strategically important project

With the new agreement, the governments of Cyprus and Egypt express their political will to facilitate the timely issuance of the necessary permits to speed up research on the route and the construction of the submarine power cable, according to a Cypriot government press release.

The project is of strategic importance to Cyprus, as it will put an end to the energy isolation on the Mediterranean island. It will also facilitate both countries’ transition to a green economy and climate neutrality, in line with the European Green Deal and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.

As part of the Energy Strategy of Cyprus, the project aims to secure the energy supply and add renewable energy sources to the island’s energy mix.

Eastern Mediterranean Energy Corridor

During the signing ceremony, Minister Pilidou reminded that the EuroAfrica Interconnector electricity link between Cyprus and Egypt is an essential element of the emerging Eastern Mediterranean Energy Corridor. She was referring to the larger energy-sharing project involving Cyprus, Greece and Egypt, the foundations of which were laid down in a trilateral summit held in Nicosia in November 2017.

On Thursday, El-Markabi signed a bilateral MoU with his Greek counterpart in Athens. A trilateral MoU will be signed soon. Both Greece and Cyprus will benefit from connecting their power grids to Egypt’s, taking advantage of the lower cost of energy from solar parks in the North African country.  

In Nicosia, the Egyptian minister said, as quoted by the Cyprus Mail, that the project will build strong and well-connected networks in the Eastern Mediterranean, to ensure the “security and reliability of energy supply” as well as the development of renewable energy sources.

Egypt’s energy outreach

Minister El-Markabi Also said that Egypt had already established electrical interconnection with Jordan, Libya and Sudan, and is planning one with Saudi Arabia which, with 3,000MW, may become the largest interconnection in the region.

The two energy ministries will set up a working group to review and monitor the implementation of the agreement.

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