The Times of Israel — A Cypriot official announced Monday that work on an electric cable linking the power grids of Israel, Cyprus and Greece via Crete, is on track to start in the first quarter of 2018 after Greek and Cypriot regulators approved the project.
Nasos Ktorides, who heads the EuroAsia Interconnector project, added that Israeli regulators are expected to give their approval next month.
The 1,520-kilometer (945-mile) undersea electric cable with a 2,000-megawatt capacity will be able to both receive and transmit electricity.
Work on the cable is expected to last until 2022 and its first phase will have an estimated cost of around 3.5 billion euros.
The project emerged amid improved relations between the three counties, coupled with the discovery of gas deposits in the east Mediterranean that could be used to generate electricity.
Israel is hoping to export much of its newly discovered natural gas to Europe by a proposed 2,200-kilometer (1,350-mile) undersea pipeline to Cyprus and Greece via Crete.
Israel’s ties with Greece and Cyprus have markedly improved in recent years, coinciding with a spat between Israel and regional rival Turkey.
The three countries now hold frequent joint military and civil protection exercises, including a planned joint air force drill that will include Cyprus, Israel, Egypt and other European countries as part of efforts to bolster stability in the eastern Mediterranean.