The European Investment Bank provides EUR 130 million to the Electricity Authority of Cyprus for a new production unit to enhance electricity supply in Cyprus.

The finance documentation was signed today in a public ceremony at the Ministry of Finance in Nicosia in the presence of Mr. Kikis Kazamias, Cypriot Minister of Finance.  The finance contract was signed for the EIB by Vice-President Plutarchos Sakellaris and for the Electricity Authority of Cyprus by the President of the Board of Directors, Mr. Harris Thrassou.

EIB Vice-President Plutarchos Sakellaris, whose responsibilities include EIB’s lending activities in Cyprus as well as energy issues, said on the occasion in Nicosia today: “In 2011 our aggregate lending in Cyprus totalled EUR 180 million.  It was for roads and education.  I am delighted to sign today a vital finance contract for energy production at the Vassilikos power plant in Cyprus.  This is our sixth loan with the Electricity Authority of Cyprus.  Through our long-lasting and good cooperation we were able to provide significant support to the generation, transmission and distribution of electricity  in Cyprus.  This loan comes in good time to cater to the urgent need for energy production in the country after the explosion at the adjacent Mari Naval Military Base last July.”

The EIB has supported a number of energy projects in Cyprus, mostly in cooperation with the Electricity Authority of Cyprus. This includes loans totaling EUR 330 million for the upgrading of the electricity transmission and distribution network, and EUR 30 million for a new internal combustion engine power plant at the Dekeleia power station in the district of Larnaca in Cyprus. A further EUR 200 million has gone to the Vassilikos electricity power plant, one of the largest investments undertaken in Cyprus. Both electricity production plants can be retrofitted to natural gas, once this becomes available on Cyprus. Electricity demand in Cyprus is rising and plants of this type provide a rapid response to load changes, which makes them suitable for generation of electricity during peak demand This will help meet demand changes in particular during the summer months, when cooling and electricity needs are highest.