By SHARON UDASIN 01/30/2012 05:14
Energy and Water minister instructs Israel Electric Corporation to begin implementing plan to link Israel’s electricity grid to that of Cyprus.
Uzi Landau By Ariel Jerozolimski
Energy and Water Minister Uzi Landau instructed the Israel Electric Corporation on Sunday to begin implementing a plan to lay undersea cables to link Israel’s electricity grid to that of Cyprus.

Landau also asked the IEC to draft a memorandum of understanding to be signed by both it and Deh Quantum Energy, the ministry announced later that day. Deh Quantum Energy is controlled by the Greek electric corporation, the Bank of Cyprus and a private firm.

If everything happens on schedule, it will be possible to submit the project for approval by both the Israeli and Cypriot governments this year, according to the ministry.

Landau first expressed interest in pursuing this idea in November, when he accompanied President Shimon Peres on a trip to Cyprus, and then again last week during the visit to Israel of Cyprus Commerce, Industry and Tourism Minister Praxoula Antoniadou Kyriacou, the Energy and Water Ministry said.

“This project could have a majorly positive influence on Israel’s economy when, for the first time in our history, we will move beyond our being an energy island and link up with Cyprus, and through it to Europe,” Landau said on Sunday.

“This is a psychological and diplomatic breakthrough that will affect Israel’s energy redundancy and energy security. We are very much interested in moving forward on the issue.”