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Brussels, 12 September 2007

European Commission appoints European coordinators for key energy projects

Today the European Commission appointed four project coordinators in the field of energy to monitor and facilitate the implementation of several priority projects. The coordinators will be responsible for the high voltage connection France-Spain; the off shore wind connections in the Baltic and North Sea areas; the NABUCCO gas connection; and the power connection between Germany, Poland and Lithuania.

"The appointment of European coordinators reflects a strong commitment to promote the implementation of major energy priority projects and the Commission's answer to expectations on the need to strengthen the security of energy supply and power interconnections. The selected coordinators all have a very high political and technical profile and I am convinced they will help ensure the successful completion of these projects", declared energy Commissioner Piebalgs.

The task of the coordinators is to offer strategic support as well as to provide practical advice. This will include tackling obstacles, bringing interested parties together across borders to work out optimal solutions, assessing impact of the projects and defining appropriate implementation strategies.

The four European coordinators have been appointed for a duration of four years and will monitor projects that face technical, political or financial difficulties.

Mr Mario Monti will thus be responsible for the high voltage connection France-Spain. This line is crucial for linking the core of the Union with the Iberian electricity "island". This link is needed to secure the supply of both countries and ensure the creation of an effective internal market.

Mr Georg Wilhelm Adamowitsch will oversee the completion of the off-shore wind connections in the Baltic and North Sea areas (Denmark-Germany-Poland). The aim of the project is to facilitate the integration of the offshore wind energy produced in the Baltic Sea and North Sea in the continental grid. This project will be a major contribution to the development of a more environmentally sustainable network.

Mr Jozias Johannes van Aartsen will deal with the NABUCCO gas connection project between Turkey and Austria through Romania, Bulgaria and Hungary. The aim is to develop, in order to reinforce the security of supply of Europe, a new gas supply route for gas produced in Central Asia, the Caspian region and the Middle East.

Mr Wladyslaw Mielczarski will help accelerate the implementation of the power connection between Germany, Poland and Lithuania. This connection will link the Baltic grid to the continental network (Germany, Poland) in order to increase the overall capacity and strengthen the reliability.

  • Mr Monti is currently President of the Bocconi University in Milano, Italy. Until 2004 he was a member of the European Commission in charge of the internal market, financial services and tax policy (1995-1999) and then of competition (1999-2004).
  • Mr Adamowitsch was until recently Secretary of State of Economy in the Federal Government of Germany.
  • Mr van Aartsen was Minister of Foreign Affairs in the Dutch government from 1998 to 2000.
  • Finally, Mr Mielczarski is professor in the University of Lodz.

The Priority Interconnection Plan adopted by the Commission on 10 January 2007[1] in the framework of the so-called Energy Policy for Europe and the Action Plan adopted by the European Council on 9 March 2007, specifically mention the nomination of European Coordinators for these projects.

[1] COM (2007) 1

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