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EuroAsia electric link recruits Nobel laureate for advisory board

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EuroAsia Interconnector, the Israel-Cyprus-Greece cable that will transmit 1,000MW of electricity from the eastern Mediterranean to energy-hungry Europe, has recruited Nobel economics laureate Sir Christopher Pissarides to head its ‘economic council’ advisory board.

The project developer of the 1,208km subsea high-voltage DC link will be ready by December 2023, ending the energy isolation of Cyprus that depends on expensive and high-emission fuel imports to run its power stations, with less than a tenth of the island’s capacity generated from renewable energy sources (RES).

Sir Christopher’s role complements the high-profile appointment of former Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides who chair’s EuroAsia’s ‘strategy council’, a greatly respected diplomat and politician.

Dr Kasoulides said that Pissarides, a professor at the London School of Economics and the University of Cyprus and universally acknowledged for his contribution in economics, is a “a distinguished economist and highly respected academic such as Dr. Pissarides, contributing his knowledge and extensive wisdom”.

Pissarides was also hand-picked by Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis in February this year to head the think-tank tasked with the long-term growth strategy for Greece. He has also undertaken a similar advisory role in the sister electricity project, the 498km EuroAfrica Interconnector.

“We are building bridges between continents, as the electricity grid of Cyprus will be connected to Greece, in Crete. The EuroAsia Interconnector ends the energy isolation of Cyprus, the last EU member state that remains fully isolated without any electricity energy interconnection,” Kasoulides added.

He said that the EuroAsia Interconnector, the construction cost of which is estimated at €1.8 bln, “will contribute significant social and economic benefits for all the countries involved and help develop the energy resources of the eastern Mediterranean, mainly from renewables and the recent discoveries of hydrocarbon deposits.”

As a leading European Project of Common Interest, labelled by the European Commission as an ‘electricity highway’, the EuroAsia Interconnector electricity link PCI 3.10 Israel-Cyprus-Greece (Crete) is eligible for grants from the €8.7 bln fund (2021-2027) of the “Connecting Europe Facility” (CEF).