LONDON, June 28 (Reuters) – Electricity exchanges between Ukraine and the European Union will begin on Thursday, the European Network of Electricity Transmission Operators (ENTSO-E) announced on Tuesday.
The EU and Ukraine linked their power grids on March 16 in response to the Russian invasion, allowing Ukraine to receive emergency power from Europe if military attacks caused blackouts.
The emergency link – which was completed in a few weeks, initially planned for 2023 – did not include a commercial exchange of electricity because certain technical conditions had to be met.
These conditions are now met to enable the first phase of electricity trade between Ukraine and neighboring countries, ENTSO-E said.
Electricity trade with the Ukrainian and Moldovan power grids will start on the interconnection between Ukraine and Romania.
Electricity exchanges on the other interconnections (Ukraine-Slovakia, Ukraine-Hungary and Moldova-Romania) should follow later. Total commercial capacity will initially be set at 100 megawatts in the first phase.
“After this initial phase, a gradual increase in commercial capacity will be regularly assessed based on power system stability and security considerations,” ENTSO-E said.
Expanding power trade with Europe could boost cash flow for Ukrainian utilities hit by a drop in domestic power since the Russian invasion, while providing more power to the 27-nation European Union as it grapples with a cut in gas supplies from Russia.
(Reporting by Nina Chestney Editing by Bernadette Baum)
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