Greece's Environment and Energy Minister Kostas Skrekas and North Macedonia's Economy Minister Kreshnik Bekteshi are seen at the singing of a deal for the construction of a natural gas interconnector. [Yannis Kolesidis/ANA-MPA]
Greece and North Macedonia on Friday signed an agreement for the construction of a pipeline that will interconnect the natural gas grids of the two countries.
The agreement was signed by Environment and Energy Minister Kostas Skrekas and North Macedonia’s Economy Minister Kreshnik Bekteshi, in the presence of the Prime Minister of North Macedonia, Zoran Zaev, US Ambassador in Greece Geoffrey Pyatt and CEO of the Hellenic Gas Transmission System Operator SA (DESFA) Maria Rita Galli.
In statements afterward, Skrekas said that the pipeline between the two countries will enhance Greece’s geopolitical role as a hub for the supply of the region with natural gas, increasing security of supply for North Macedonia by a diversification of supply sources and assisting in the decarbonisation of its economy.
The pipeline will be 123 km long, linking to Greece’s gas grid at Nea Mesimvria and with North Macedonia at Negotino. It will be able to transport 1.5 billion cubic metres a year with the possibility of doubling this, while the size of the investment is estimated to reach 110 million euros.
The final investment decision is expected to be taken by early 2022, at the latest.
Bektashi said the signing of the agreement was a historic moment after many years of effort, saying that the project will enhance energy supply diversification, security and stability for the entire region.