Gas grid operator DESFA has begun preparations with the energy ministry to stage a market test by September for the Greek segment of a gas pipeline interconnector to run to North Macedonia.
RAE, the Regulatory Authority for Energy, requested a market test, to ensure sufficient capacity reservation by users, for the project when it endorsed DESFA’s development plan covering 2017 to 2026.
North Macedonian authorities are also working on preparations for the project’s development. Just days ago, the country’s transport and communications minister Blagoj Bocvarski noted that all will be ready by the end of 2021 for the announcement of a tender concerning the construction of the project’s North Macedonian segment.
All licensing requirements will have been resolved earlier, by the middle of this year, Bocvarski added.
DESFA and its North Macedonian counterpart MER signed a Memorandum of Understanding in October, 2016 for the pipeline project.
Its Greek segment, budgeted at 51.4 million euros, will cover a 57-km distance, beginning from Thessaloniki’s Nea Mesimvria area.
The pipeline will be linked to Greece’s prospective Alexandroupoli FSRU in the northeast. North Macedonia currently fully depends on Russian gas supply through a Balkan pipeline.