€750m offered for energy projects that ‘connect EU’

The European Commission is inviting bids for €750 million (£611.5m) worth of funding for energy infrastructure projects across the EU. It is the first call for proposals under the Connecting […]

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By Priyanka Shrestha

The European Commission is inviting bids for €750 million (£611.5m) worth of funding for energy infrastructure projects across the EU.

It is the first call for proposals under the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) for “first priority projects” mainly in the gas and electricity sectors.

They are expected to help address issues around energy security and “bring an end to the energy isolation” of some member states as well as contribute to the completion of the EU-wide internal energy market and integration of renewables to the grid, the Commission said.

In order to apply for a grant, a project has to be included in the “list of projects of common interest”, which was adopted in October last year. It consists of around 250 key energy infrastructure projects which when completed would benefit at least two member states.

The cash will also be available to finance studies and construction work.

Günther Oettinger, European Energy Commissioner believes such a huge amount of EU financial support “will make a solid difference”.

He added: “The current Ukraine crisis underlines the importance of upgrading energy infrastructure and building missing interconnections between Member States in order to enhance the energy security in the EU. In general Member States can only help each other with energy supplies if they are well connected.

“Moreover, improving the energy infrastructure is a prerequisite for completing the internal energy market for the benefit of consumers and businesses in the EU.”

The deadline for proposals is 19th August 2014.