Czech Republic: €190 million EIB loan to modernise energy transmission infrastructure

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State-owned energy transmission system operator CEPS has secured a €190 million ($229 million) loan from the European Investment Bank to strengthen its infrastructure.

A project will be deployed to improve the security of the electricity system and facilitate power exchanges and transit flows mainly from Germany to Austria through Poland and the Czech Republic.

As an EU Project of Common Interest, it will also enhance the integration of renewables in the network.

Most of the investment will occur in cohesion with priority regions and support the efficient operation of the electricity market in the Central and Eastern Europe region.

The Czech Republic is a key country in Central-Eastern Europe for power trading and transit, given its location, in particular next to Germany.

Solving network bottlenecks in neighbouring countries and supporting the growth in renewables in the area are essential to ensure safe and resilient operation of the Czech energy transmission network and maintain security of supply.

This EIB investment will span over 2021-2024.

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EIB vice-president Lilyana Pavlova, said: “This partnership will reinforce the electricity transmission in and around the country and thus benefit all citizens and strengthen cohesion in the region. By facilitating the integration of renewables, this project will also contribute to supporting the energy transition of the Czech Republic, in line with the objectives of the EU Green Deal and our recently approved EIB Climate Bank Roadmap. Ensuring a just transition to a low carbon economy is essential to achieve a resilient future for all and I am very pleased to partner with CEPS in this endeavour.”

CEPS chairman of the Board of Directors Martin Durcak, adds: “Reliable operation of the transmission system and thus secure electricity supply in the Czech Republic and the European region are ČEPS’s priority tasks. Thanks to the cooperation with the EIB, ČEPS will further fulfill its extensive investment programme and contribute to the safe operation of the Czech and regional energy transmission grid.”

CEPS is responsible for the maintenance and upgrading of 43 substations comprising 77 transformers, which allow electricity to be supplied from the transmission system to the distribution network, as well as 400kV lines with a total length of 3,780 km and 220kV lines with a total length of 1,737 km.