Moldova to build power link with Romania
Moldova aims to connect its electricity network with Romania’s using the proceeds of a joint investment from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the European Investment Bank (EIB), the European Union (EU) and the World Bank.
Following an initial 160 million euro ($175 million) loan provided by the EBRD and the EIB in equal parts, the EU is now joining the project with a 40 million euro investment grant, the EBRD said in a press release. The World Bank is providing an additional $70 million loan.
The EU grant will co-finance the construction of a 600 MW back-to-back converter substation in Vulcanesti. The World Bank loan will finance the construction of a new 400 kV high-voltage overhead line between Vulcanesti and Moldova’s capital Chisinau, as well as the expansion and upgrade of associated high voltage substations.
The interconnection is of critical importance for the diversification of Moldova’s electricity resources, the EBRD said. Currently, the country depends on a single power plant fueled by natural gas, oil and coal and on electricity imports from Ukraine for up to 80% of its electricity supply.
"This joint financing operation has been designed as an ambitious and comprehensive energy development project whose overall objective is to increase capacity and improve reliability of the power transmission system in the Republic of Moldova," Moldovan finance minister Natalia Gavrilita said.
"In the medium-term, the goal is the full integration into the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity. It is a long process but worth the effort," EU Ambassador to Moldova, Peter Michalko said.
The project will ultimately pave the way towards Moldova’s integration into the European electricity grid operated by the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity.
The interconnection will be built by Moldova’s public electricity utility Moldelectrica between 2019 and 2024.