Elia and National Grid explore Belgium-UK interconnection

8 February 2008 – Belgian transmission system operator Elia and UK-based electricity and gas firm National Grid have signed a joint development agreement to investigate the potential for a 700 MW-1300 MW electricity interconnector between Belgium and the UK.

Elia stated that this is the first ever electricity interconnector development between the two countries and should the project go ahead, would provide greater access to electricity markets, promote competition, increase diversity of supply and contribute to energy security in Belgium and the UK.

The agreement allows initial feasibility studies to be further developed, and sets the framework by which the two companies would jointly pursue a possible future electricity interconnector project.

Elia said that this interconnector will be consistent with the European Union’s (EU’s) aspirations to promote greater interconnectivity between member states. Belgium already has significant interconnection with neighboring networks.

The UK has a 2000 MW interconnector link to France and the 1000 MW BritNed interconnector with the Netherlands is being built by National Grid and Dutch transmission system operator TenneT.