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Spain and France select contractors for the Biscay Gulf power line

Inelfe, a joint venture company owned in equal parts by the Spanish transmission system operator Red Eléctrica (REE) and its French counterpart RTE, has awarded the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contracts for the Biscay Gulf electricity interconnection project.

The project comprises two high-voltage direct current (HVDC) links, each with a capacity of 1000 MW. The EPC contracts, for the almost 1,600 km of HVDC submarine and land cables, have been awarded to NKT HV Cables and Prysmian Powerlink. Additionally, the EPC contract for the converter stations has been awarded to the consortium Hitachi Energy/VINCI. The last EPC contract for the civil works associated with the land cables is still in the tender stage and will be awarded later in 2023. Contracts are expected to be signed before May 2023 and the construction work for the interconnection is scheduled to start after this summer. The project should be commissioned in 2028, nearly doubling the interconnection capacity between the two countries from 2.8 GW to over 5 GW.

Earlier in March 2023, the French and Spanish energy regulators agreed on the distribution of the financing of the Biscay power interconnection project between France and Spain, whose cost has been reevaluated to €2,850m, with a risk envelope of €250m.