All grants from the European Union to Egypt for ongoing projects in the energy sector will amount to a total of approximately €200m, according to Reinhold Brender, the chargé d’affaires of the EU delegation to Egypt.
Financial support from the EU significantly helped Egypt design its new Integrated Sustainable Energy Strategy for 2035, Brender explained in an interview with Daily News Egypt on the sidelines of a conference on the sustainable energy strategy. This conference took place last week and was co-organised by the EU under the patronage of the Egyptian prime minister.
Beyond its work on the energy strategy, the EU also helped Egypt develop important building blocks for the implementation of this strategy, including new gas legislation and the setting up of a new gas regulator, Brender said.
The EU has also provided significant support for the diversification of Egypt’s energy supply, according to Brender. This included the co-financing of the 200 MW El-Zayt wind farm, together with KfW Development Bank and the European Investment Bank (EIB). It was foreseen that additional large wind farm projects would also be co-funded by the EU and the European financial institutions.
According to Brender, the EU is also supporting the strengthening of the national grid in providing electricity and gas to households, industries, and power plants. Notably, the EU was co-funding the Electricity Power Transmission project amounting to €500m, which included the installation of a large number of sub-stations and transmission lines to link the newly added renewable capacities to the grid. Moreover, the EU was also supporting the Egyptian Gas Household project, which sought to increase the number of interconnected households to 2.4m in the next two years. Brender pointed out the social dimension of this project—a portion of the EU funds were allocated to provide financial support to low-income households that were unable to pay the full connection cost.
More generally, Brender took the view that it was politically important for Egypt to have designed an energy strategy for 2035 because this conveyed an important message to investors that Egypt has a clear vision of the development of this sector, which in turn is crucially important for the country’s development.
Brender welcomed energy efficiency being high on Egypt’s agenda, and the country pursuing a bold policy to increase the share of renewables in its energy mix. He expressed his trust in the final decision for feed-in tariffs providing necessary reassurance for investors.