ATHENS, May 9 (Reuters) - Greece moved closer to cutting Crete’s reliance on oil to generate power on Thursday as grid operator ADMIE signed a 178 million euro ($200 million) European Investment Bank loan to partly fund undersea cables to the mainland.
The 132 kilometre interconnection of Crete to the Peloponnese peninsula is key to ensuring the power supply on the island which relies solely on oil-fired plants and will help Greece ramp up its renewable energy capacity, ADMIE said.
The project, budgeted at 350 million euros, consists of two undersea cables, and is expected to be completed next year.
Total lending in Greece by the EIB, which is owned by the European Union’s 28 member states, stands at 19 billion euros ($21.4 billion), including green energy, transport and telecommunications projects. ($1 = 0.8896 euros) (Reporting by Angeliki Koutantou; Editing by Alexander Smith)