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Over 57 mln euros to projects that help replace Russian gas

EU Member States have given the green light to a Commission proposal to invest 602 million euros of EU funds in eight cross-border energy infrastructure projects under the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) for Trans-European Networks for Energy.

Increased cross-border interconnection of energy infrastructure is a key enabler for the European Green Deal, as it makes it easier to integrate more renewable energy into the grid. It was also a priority highlighted in the REPowerEU plan earlier this year to increase the EU’s security of supply.

Among the projects, we find GreenSwitch, a cross-border electricity smart grid between Austria, Croatia and Slovenia. CEF’s support of 73.1 million euros for investments will serve to upgrade electricity grids to allow for the integration of an increasing number of new users (renewable energy production, heat pumps, electric vehicles), to optimise grid operation via digitalisation and to make full use of complementarities in terms of seasonal loads between the three countries.

Two further projects will also receive support from CEF to help replace the Russian gas supply in line with REPowerEU objectives. The underground gas storage facility in Bilciurești, Romania, is set to receive 38 million euros for expansion works. This will significantly help Romania and the region to reduce dependence on Russian gas imports during peak consumption observed in winter by increasing storage capacity and its overall flexibility.

The liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal in Gdansk, Poland (19.6 million euros), is also a project eligible to receive funding to finance studies for its offshore part. In the context of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the project will improve the security of supply and independence from Russian gas, as well as contribute to increasing the availability of LNG for Poland and the wider region.

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