Donnerstag, 21. März 2013

EUR 500 million finance agreement to upgrade France’s power grid

(LEXEGESE) - According to the European Investment Bank (EIB), EIB has agreed to participate in the financing of seven high voltage and very high voltage power grid upgrading projects in France over the period 2012-2016. This participation takes the form of a loan totalling €500 million, of which a first tranche of €300 million was signed on Wednesday 20 March 2013. The second €200 million tranche of the loan will be signed in 2014.

The investment programme is expected to run to nearly €8 billion over the period 2012-2016. To implement the selected seven major transmission projects in a number of French regions, the EIB will cover 43% of the investment (€1.2 billion).

Financing these projects shall help to ensure the quality and security of supply and enable new generation sources to be connected to the grid, particularly renewables, involving the creation of more than 580 km of 400 kV, 225 kV and 90 kV lines and the upgrading of 275 km of 400 kV lines.

The loan will enable the following projects to be financed in 2013:
  • completion of the Cotentin-Maine project, which also aims to ensure security of supply in western France and introduce renewables (onshore and offshore wind energy, wave energy) into the power grid;
  • securing and upgrading the 400 kV grid connecting Lyon and Montélimar, considered a major project for the security of Europe’s power grid;
  • the PACA “power safety net” project, which will give the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region the same security of power supply as other regions in France.
These projects account for around 70% of the overall investment programme.

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