EU invests in natural gas interconnections
On the sidelines of the Energy Infrastructure Forum taking place on 24-25 May in Copenhagen, Climate Action and Energy Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete witnessed the signing of two agreements for two major infrastructure projects, i.e. the grant agreement for studies for the Gas Interconnector between Denmark and Poland (Baltic-Pipe) and the connection agreement (Final Investment Decision) for the Gas Interconnector between Poland and Lithuania (GIPL). These two gas interconnectors have the status of EU Projects of Common Interest (PCIs), and have received financial support under the Connecting Europe Facility program, to the tune of €33 million and €276 million, respectively.
Both ventures are flagship projects of the EU and key to addressing the energy challenges facing the Eastern Baltic Sea Region and the Central-Eastern Europe. The Baltic-Pipe will enhance diversification of gas sources and increase competition, while GIPL will help bring an end to the isolation of the gas system of the Baltic Sea region and integrate it into the internal energy market.
The two signature ceremonies were held at 16:00 on May 24 in the presence of Commissioner Arias Cañete and Lars Christian Lilleholt, Minister for Energy, Utilities and Climate of Denmark, Egidijus Purlys, Deputy Minister of Energy of the Republic of Lithuania, Piotr Naimski, Plenipotentiary of the Government of the Republic of Poland for Strategic Energy Infrastructure, and Michał Kurtyka, Deputy Minister of Energy of the Republic of Poland.
After the ceremonies, Commissioner Cañete welcomed the investment, saying:
A solid, modern and strategic energy infrastructure is a crucial piece of our Energy Union, and the Commission is committed to strengthen it during its mandate. By supporting the gas interconnections between Poland and Lithuania and between Denmark and Poland, two projects under our EU list of Projects of Common Interest (PCIs), we are increasing diversification of sources and energy security for the region, whilstending the Baltic Sea energy isolation. This is what European solidarity on energy is all about, one which provides real benefits and added-value to our citizens