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Greece offers an electricity link with Austria and Germany

Greece has proposed to build a cable that will transport electricity produced by renewable energies to Austria and southern Germany, its energy minister announced on Thursday.

With abundant sun and wind, Athens has simplified permits and is supporting big investments in expanding power grids to more than double the share of renewables to 70% of electricity consumption by 2030.

“We have already submitted a proposal to Austria, to my Austrian counterpart and to my German counterpart to build an electricity interconnector to connect Greece to Austria and further to southern Germany,” the minister said. of Energy Kostas Skrekas at a conference on renewable energies in Athens.

Skrekas said the cable, which would cross Albania and other Balkan countries, would have an initial capacity of 3 gigawatts which could be increased to 9 gigawatts.

A source from the Ministry of Energy indicated that discussions with Austria and Germany are underway on the conditions for the implementation and financing of such a project.

The European Union executive wants to accelerate the bloc’s green transition and reduce its dependence on Russian fuels by allowing certain renewable energy projects to receive permits within a year.

European governments trying to meet their carbon reduction targets have seen their efforts complicated by soaring energy prices and a fuel supply crisis following Russia’s cuts in flows of gas to Europe after invading Ukraine.

In the meantime, Greece is building a niche for itself as a supplier of renewable energy.

Together with Cyprus, the country last week inaugurated the construction of the EuroAsia Interconnector, an EU-funded submarine cable that will cross the Mediterranean carrying up to 2,000 megawatts of electricity to eventually connect the networks of Israel and Cyprus to Greece.

And last year, Greece signed a deal with Egypt that paves the way for an undersea cable that will transmit renewable energy to Europe, the first infrastructure of its kind in the Mediterranean. (Reporting by Angeliki Kotantou; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)