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16-10-2021 12:47

Opening remarks by the Minister of Energy, Commerce and Industry at the signing ceremony for the MoU on Cooperation in relation to Electricity Cross-Border Interconnection between Cyprus and Egypt

On behalf of the Ministry of Energy, Commerce and Industry I would like to welcome you all to this very special signing ceremony, particularly the Egyptian delegation visiting Cyprus, led by my friend, the Minister of Electricity and Renewable Energy of the Arab Republic of Egypt, Dr Mohamed Shaker El-Markabi. The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that we have just signed, on cooperation between our two Ministries in relation to Electricity Cross-Border Interconnection between Cyprus and Egypt Transmission Networks, marks an important milestone in the joint efforts of the two countries to promote regional collaboration in the field of energy. And, of course, it reaffirms the strong bonds between our people.

Building on the work done by our Governments over the past few years, especially during the trilateral summits of our Heads of State, the MoU enhances further the cooperation between Cyprus, and Egypt in supporting the planning, development and implementation of the electricity interconnection of the two countries, as an additional element of the emerging Eastern Mediterranean Energy Corridor.

For Cyprus, this electricity interconnection with Egypt, one of our valued strategic allies in the region, has the potential to constitute a cornerstone of our efforts to transition to a green economy, enhancing both countries’ ability to meet our respective commitments under the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.

There is no doubt that Cyprus and Egypt have so much to gain from the implementation of the Interconnection. Fortifying our electricity grids and allowing the further integration of Renewables in our respective energy mix, enhancing the security of our energy supply and enabling us to become exporters of energy, are but a few of the tangible benefits, which we hope to harness in the most efficient way possible through today’s MoU.

In this context, we have come to the common understanding that we need to work closely together in facilitating the timely granting of permits and approvals needed for carrying out both feasibility studies and the construction works of the electricity interconnection, as well as the discussions and coordination between our national electricity Regulatory Authorities and Transmission System Operators. Moreover, we must coordinate on all the appropriate measures to ensure the safety and security of the interconnection during the implementation period, as well as throughout the life of the project.

I note here that as per the Memorandum’s provisions, a working group consisting of representatives by both our Ministries, will be set up to review and monitor its implementation.

In closing, I would like to thank the people who have worked hard to make this day possible: my colleague the Minister of Electricity and Renewable Energy of Egypt, Dr Shaker El-Markabi and, of course, the members of the Egyptian and Cypriot technical teams who have negotiated the Memorandum in good faith and with remarkable dedication.

Thank you.