Baltics and Poland sign electricity system pledge with European Commission

The heads of government of Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Poland and the president of the European Commission have signed a deal on how to proceed with synchronising the electricity networks of the Baltic countries to continental Europe, reported the Estonian government press service.

"According to research, the Baltic states will have the highest security of supply without significantly larger fixed costs in the case of two separate alternating current connections through Poland. At the same time, current data suggests that creating a second alternating current connection in addition to the current one between Lithuania and Poland is expensive and there is no certain term for the construction of the second connection. The Baltic States wish to disconnect their electricity networks from Russia and synchronise them with continental Europe by 2025," a release said. 

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The prime ministers and the European Commission agreed to order an in-depth analysis to figure out the expenses and technical solutions that would allow synchronization of the electricity systems through the existing alternating current cable between Lithuania and Poland and the new submarine direct current cable. The research will be completed by the end of August.

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said: "Since the beginning of our mandate my Commission has been committed to have full integration of the Baltic States grids with the rest of Europe. It is our duty and a question of necessity for the Baltic States and for the Union. We have worked to build consensus, and have now signed such consensus. In this Roadmap we set the target date of 2025 for the full synchronisation.“

Disconnecting our electricity network from that of Russia and synchronising it with continental Europe is vital in ensuring energy security. We cannot be dependent on the Russian network,” Estonian Prime Minister Juri Ratas explained.

“Thanks to today’s agreement, we can proceed and begin to apply for funding to strengthen the electricity networks of the Baltic countries.”

Ratas emphasised that ultimately, Estonia can agree only to a synchronising solution that ensures high security of supply for our consumers and does not incur high fixed costs. “If the additional research shows that the alternating and direct current connection does not ensure this, we must consider other options. Our priorities in making this decision are a reliable supply of electricity and its price for consumers,” said Ratas.

Formerly an "energy island", the Baltic States region is now connected with European partners through recently established electricity lines with Poland (LitPol Link), Sweden (NordBalt) and Finland (Estlink 1 and Estlink 2). These projects were made possible and built with EU support. For historical reasons, however, the Baltic States' electricity grid is still operated in a synchronous mode with the Russian and Belarusian systems.

The desynchronisation of the Baltic States' electricity grid from these systems and the synchronisation with the continental European network (CEN) is an essential political priority for the achievement of the Energy Union.

You can read the actual document signed in the attachment.

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