ECONOMY

Greece-Turkey power deal

Greece and Turkey yesterday signed a protocol for the exchange of electrical energy, with immediate application, marking the first step toward the two neighbors’ cooperation in this domain. Turkey’s Energy and Natural Resources Minister Mehmet Hilmi Guler, who signed the protocol in Ankara with Greek Development Minister Dimitris Sioufas, said: «The works for the exchange of electricity with Greece are complete, all preparations are in place and today we are here to announce our cooperation. This is a line of 268 kilometers that will transmit 137 kilovolts to Greece from end-July or early August.» In January 2008, the works for the interconnection of Greek and Turkish power systems will be completed (through the 400-KV Philippi-Babaeski line). The two ministers also discussed issues concerning their states’ energy cooperation and the completion of the Greek-Turkish natural gas pipeline, as well as preparations for the interstate agreement for the Turkey-Greece-Italy natural gas pipeline. Sioufas commented that this was «another important energy agreement between the two states, and another step for strengthening the two countries’ ties.» He stressed that the protocol opens up Turkish-Greek cooperation, to be fulfilled with the operation of the 400-KV line in January. «Relations with Greece are very good and new projects are constantly being implemented. We will also be able to receive electricity from Greece. This way, after natural gas, Turkey and Greece are expanding their cooperation,» added Guler and noted: «This kind of agreement will have great effects, as thanks to the projects the two countries have started, we will be able to develop in the future new ideas, new projects and continue our cooperation. I hope this becomes an example for other countries in the region.»