Tuesday, January 25, 2022

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Washington pulls back from EastMed gas pipeline support

The United States is no longer supporting the Eastern Mediterranean (EastMed) gas pipeline project and is switching to promoting clean energy technologies as well as efforts that deepen relationships in the Mediterranean region.

“We are shifting our focus to electricity interconnectors that can support both gas and renewable energy sources”, underscores the statement of the US Embassy and Consulate in Greece.

According to the statement, while Washington remains “committed to physically interconnecting East Med energy to Europe”, it wants to foster regional endeavours that “enhance and promote cooperation and regional stability, including the 3+1 mechanism in which the Republic of Cyprus (ROC), Greece, Israel, + the United States participate.”

To achieve this, the US will promote “electricity interconnectors that can support both gas and renewable energy sources.”

“We support projects such as the planned EuroAfrica interconnector from Egypt to Crete and the Greek mainland and the proposed EuroAsia interconnector to link the Israeli, Cypriot and European electricity grids. Such projects would not only connect vital energy markets but would also help prepare the region for the clean energy transition”, reads the statement in addition.

The EastMed gas pipeline project is meant to transport Israeli natural gas to Italy and the broader European market via the Mediterranean Sea and Greece.

Greece, Israel and Cyprus signed an agreement for the construction of the Eastern Mediterranean pipeline in 2020. The project which aims to transfer between 9 to 12 billion cubic metres of offshore gas is considered of common interest of energy infrastructure in Europe.

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