ICGB receives the final payment under OPIC for the construction of the interconnector Greece-Bulgaria
The independent transmission operator ICGB received approval of the final payment from the grant funding for the implementation of the Greece-Bulgaria interconnector, provided under the Operational Programme "Innovation and Competitiveness" (OPIC). The total funding allocated under OPIC amounts to €39 million. It is disbursed to the pipeline operator in tranches, following thorough inspections at each stage to ensure quality and successful completion of works. This creates an additional level of control and assurance that all implementation and project management activities are carried out in line with the highest industry standards.
“The latest tranche of €1 742 569 has already been utilized, completing the funding process under OPIC. This is yet another indication of the quality work done by the ICGB team and a positive assessment for the company and its compliance with the rules and requirements introduced by the European financial institutions”, announced ICGB’s Executive Officers Teodora Georgieva and George Satlas.
The IGB interconnector, which connects the gas transmission systems of Greece and Bulgaria, has been in commercial operation since October 1, 2022. So far, over 11.3 million megawatt-hours or more than 962 million cubic meters of natural gas have been transported through the pipeline.
The total budget for the project implementation is €253 million. It is secured through funds from shareholders BEH and IGI Poseidon, as well as a €109.9 million long-term loan from the European Investment Bank (EIB), grant financing of €45 million under the European Energy Programme for Recovery (EEPR), and €39 million under OPIC.
In early November 2022, ICGB received approval for the final tranche of the long-term loan from the EIB following a successful audit by independent international experts. The company has already initiated the procedure for the reimbursement of eligible costs under the financing from EEPR. The final tranche of €22 million is expected to be approved without remarks by the end of the summer of 2023.
During the commercial operation phase of the IGB pipeline, independent audits will continue even after the funding for the interconnector is utilized in full. These audits will be conducted annually and will cover both documentation checks and on-site inspections.
Gas Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria is co-financed by the European Union's
European Energy Programme for Recovery programme.
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