Creation date: July 15, 2016
Today Member States agreed on the European Commission's proposal to invest €263 million in key trans-European energy infrastructure projects. The lion's share of the money will go to the building of gas infrastructure in the Baltic Sea region, but also to the electricity sector across Europe. In total, nine projects were selected following a call for proposals under the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF), an EU funding programme for infrastructure. The selected projects will increase energy security and help end the isolation of Member States from EU-wide energy networks. They will also help enhance competition on the European energy market and thus contribute to ensuring that consumers get best value for their money.
The European Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy Miguel Arias Cañete said: "Well-connected energy infrastructure is essential to the Energy Union. This EU support will help fill the still-existing gaps in energy infrastructure, putting us on the path to a truly connected European energy market. This is a prerequisite to a secure energy supply as well as an efficient use of our energy resources and integration of renewables to the grid."
In the gas sector, the allocated grants will cover, among others, the construction of the Balticconnector (EU support €187.5 million), the first bi-directional sub-sea gas pipeline between Estonia and Finland. Once completed, the interconnector will end the historical dependence of Finland from a single gas supplier. Balticconnector will enhance the security of supply in the Eastern Baltic Sea region; it will provide for the diversification of sources and routes and will enable competition on the regional gas market.
In the electricity sector, the list will include the construction of a new 100 km electricity line between Dobrudja and Burgas in Bulgaria (EU support €29.9 million).
Studies needed to launch the projects will also be supported.
The list includes a preparatory study which will identify the technical requirements for the secure and reliable operation of the Baltic States' power system. The study (EU support €125 010) is essential to help evaluate whether the Baltic States' power system is capable of operating in an isolated mode and for analysing different possibilities for its synchronous connection with either the Continental European Network or the network of the Nordic countries. The list also includes a study on the Front End Engineering Design for an interconnection at Nea Messimvria in Greece (EU support €243 250). The metering and regulating station will help connect the Greek natural gas transmission system with the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) project which is currently under construction.
Of the 9 proposals selected for funding:
The European Commission proposal to select these projects was supported by the CEF Coordination Committee, which consists of representatives from all Member States. Later this month the Commission will formally adopt the list of proposals which will receive financial assistance under CEF-Energy.
Under the Connecting Europe Facility, a total of €5.35 billion has been allocated to trans-European energy infrastructure for the period of 2014-2020.
In order to be eligible for a grant, a proposal has to relate to a project included in the list of 'projects of common interest'. There are currently 195 energy infrastructure projects on the list. When completed, the projects would each ensure significant benefits for at least two Member States, enhance security of supply, contribute to market integration and further competition as well as reduce CO2 emissions. The list is updated every two years.
Under the first call for CEF-energy in 2014, 34 projects received grants of €647 million.
In 2015, 35 projects received €366 million in financial support.
|List of all projects receiving EU support under the current call||
Innovation & Networks Executive Agency (INEA) is responsible for the implementation of the projects.