Greek gas grid operator DESFA and its state-controlled North Macedonian counterpart MER plan to upgrade a memorandum of cooperation signed in 2016 for the construction of a 120-kilometer gas pipeline from Thessaloniki’s Nea Mesimvria area to the northern neighbor.
Heading a Greek delegation, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and his North Macedonian peer Zoran Zaev have agreed to sign a series of bilateral agreements and memorandums of cooperation in Skopje today.
The project, to interconnect the Greek and North Macedonian gas transmission systems, is regarded as one of the most significant energy investments being prepared by the two countries.
It is planned to offer an annual transmission capacity of about 3 billion cubic meters and also enable an interconnection with the TAP route – to supply Azerbaijan gas to European markets via Greece – for a diversification of sources.
The DESFA-MER association promises to be further enhanced by the North Macedonian operator’s moves for gas system interconnections with Kosovo and Montenegro.
Subsequently, the Greek-North Macedonian natural gas pipeline, once constructed, promises to offer a new supply route to Balkan markets.
DESFA is preparing to stage a market test for the Greek-North Macedonian pipeline during the second half of this year, sources have informed.
Meanwhile, Greece’s power grid operator IPTO and its North Macedonian counterpart MEPSO are discussing preliminary studies intended to lead to an upgrade of electricity interconnections between the two countries.