ICGB signed a contract for receiving a grant from the Operational Program "Innovation and Competitiveness" 2014-2020
On December 21, 2018, an administrative contract for direct grant awarding was signed between the Project Company ICGB AD and the Managing Authority of the Operational Program "Innovation and Competitiveness" 2014-2020 for the project "Construction of Gas Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria” amounting to EUR 39 million.
Granting additional funding is a key step in the implementation of the project and a fundamental condition for ensuring the competitiveness of the project and reaching market tariff levels.
The process of preparation for the application lasted more than a year as it required an amendment in the Operational Program in Bulgaria, the acceptance of the Project as an eligible beneficiary and a thorough analysis and evaluation by the European Commission.
An obligatory condition for the grant is also the decision taken by the European Commission on 08.11.2018 on compatible State Aid which provided the possibility to proceed to the amendment of the Operational Program and application for grant amounting to EUR 39 million. The EC's decision on compatible state aid also allows for the conclusion of long-term loan agreement with the European Investment Bank of EUR 110 million, which is covered by a state guarantee of the same amount.
"Today's achievement is the result of common constructive and purposeful efforts of many people. Therefore, besides the team of the Managing Authority of the Operational Program "Innovation and Competitiveness", I would like to express my gratitude as well to the Minister of the Economy and the Minister of the Energy for supporting this strategic and key project. I also thank the team of ICGB AD for the professionalism, the pioneering spirit and the tireless efforts they have put into the implementation of this complex task. Today's step is a huge one for the project on its difficult path to realization”, said Teodora Georgieva, Executive Officer of ICGB.
With the signing of the administrative agreement between the beneficiary and the OPIC Managing Authority is achieved the milestone for 2018 under the program - approval of a major project. With the achievement of this goal, as well as with the conclusion of the loan agreement with the EIB, the final steps have been taken to secure the necessary funding for the IGB Project.
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