Italy: EUR 365 million for the development of Italgas and Snam Rete Gas projects
The European Investment Bank (EIB) has signed two loan contracts with Snam, amounting to EUR 300 million and EUR 65 million, for the financing of two projects to be developed respectively by Italgas and Snam Rete Gas, the two Snam-controlled companies operating in the distribution and transmission of natural gas across the national grid.
The two loans, in addition to the EUR 283 million loan granted in August for Stogit’s development project for the Bordolano storage reservoir, are in line with Snam’s strategy to optimise the Group’s financial structure in that they are complementary to bonds and banking facilities and are characterised by longer durations at the competitive costs which can be achieved through this kind of funding.
About 40% of Italgas’s investment plan and over 60% of Snam Rete Gas’s plan involve projects in southern Italy, in full compliance with the funding policies of the European Investment Bank, aimed at working with and developing underprivileged areas.
Italgas’s investment plan incorporates projects with an estimated total cost of around EUR 620 million, aimed at making its distribution network more efficient and technologically advanced, through the gradual replacement of pipes and meters, the implementation of smart metering projects and the development of new distribution networks. The EUR 300 million loan will be at a floating rate and will have a duration of 20 years.
Snam Rete Gas’s investments, for which the EIB will provide a EUR 65 million loan − at a floating rate and for a period of 19 years – have an estimated total cost of approximately EUR 170 million and will enable the completion of the Zimella-Cervignano d'Adda pipeline between the provinces of Verona and Lodi in the Po Valley, and the replacement of four turbines at the Messina compressor station. These activities are key to the enhancement of the Italian gas system, with a view to increasing interconnection between European gas networks.
The Stogit project, for which the EIB granted EUR 283 million last summer, involves the development of a storage reservoir in Bordolano in the province of Cremona, which is included in the TEN-E (Trans-European Energy Network) programme, providing funding to trans-European energy networks with the aim of increasing both security and diversification of supply.