Georgia is conducting a feasibility study for an undersea electricity link with Romania worth EUR 2 billion. Azerbaijan also intends to use the interconnection to export green electricity, and Hungary said it would join the project.
Europe is rushing to diversify its energy supply and the efforts have intensified since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Power interconnections are necessary for the flow of electricity from renewable sources and for keeping the transmission system stable. Georgia, counting on its green energy potential, hired CESI from Italy to conduct a feasibility study for an undersea link with Romania.
Romania was invited to join in March. Hungary revealed last month that it would also participate, while Azerbaijan is also looking to utilize the interconnector under the Black Sea to export renewable electricity.
Feasibility study is scheduled to be completed by end-2023
Georgia obtained funds for the feasibility study from the World Bank, Profit.ro reported. It is worth EUR 2.5 million and is envisaged to be finished by the end of next year.
The country’s transmission system operator GSE said it is cooperating with its Romanian counterpart Transelectrica, which revealed it would include the power link project in its development plan if the two countries reach a deal. The Government of Georgia is also in communication with Armenia.
ENTSO-E already counts on the Georgia-Romania power link in its projections
The European Network of Transmission System Operators (ENTSO-E) already included the Black Sea interconnector in its projections. Georgia estimated it would cost more than EUR 2 billion and that it could be commissioned in late 2029.
The 500 kV submarine cable from substation Anaklia to Constanța Sud would be 1.100 kilometers long and have a capacity of 1 GW. GSE said the project includes a telecommunications cable.
Romania launched a submarine power link project with Turkey two decades ago, but it has been dormant for many years now.
Greece working on interconnection project with Saudi Arabia
There are several other plans for undersea interconnections in the Mediterranean. Greece and Saudi Arabia recently started to discuss the possibility to install a power line. The government in Athens is already working on submarine electricity links with Cyprus, Israel and Egypt, which could be used to establish the connection, and a second one with Italy. Furthermore, Cyprus would interconnect its power grid with Egypt’s separately.
Of note, Copelouzos Group from Greece held a meeting last week with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi and other top officials to discuss the 954-kilometer ELICA Interconnection project and its intention to build wind and solar power plants with a combined capacity of 9.5 GW in the North African country, Energypress reported.