Fingrid and Elering, the electricity transmission system operators in Finland and Estonia respectively, have signed contracts concerning the delivery of the cable and the construction of converter substations for the EstLink 2 electricity transmission connection. The new submarine cable connection will play an important role in the development of the electricity market in the Baltic Sea region. The connection will be brought to commercial operation in early 2014.
The EstLink 2 HVDC connection between Finland and Estonia will have a transmission capacity of 650 MW, which increases the total transmission capacity between the countries to 1,000 MW. The total length of the link is approx. 170 km, some 14 km of which is overhead line in Finland, about 145 km submarine cable laid on the bottom of the Gulf of Finland, and about 12 km underground cable in Estonia.
The total budget of the project is approx. 320 million euros, which will be divided between Fingrid and Elering . The Commission of the European Union has confirmed that the construction of EstLink 2 will receive 100 million euros in investment subsidy from the EU as part of a more extensive economy recovery package of the EU.
Primary contracts have been signed.
Fingrid and Elering signed a contract with Nexans Norway AS on the implementation of the submarine cable. Contracts on the construction of the necessary converter substations in Finland and Estonia were signed with the consortium Siemens Aktiengesellschaft and Siemens Osakeyhtiö. The total contract price of the cable and converter substations is approximately 280 million euros, of which Fingrid’s portion is about 130 million euros.
The project also calls for the enlargement of the Anttila substation in Porvoo in Finland and of the Püssi substation in Estonia.
The contract for the expansion of the Anttila substation and for the Nikuviken cable terminal station was awarded to Empower Oy. The value of the contract is approximately 10 million euros. The French company ETDE will build the direct current transmission line between Anttila and Nikuviken and carry out the transmission line arrangements at the Anttila substation. The value of this contract is approximaately 6 million euros.
The submarine cable project between Finland and Estonia has progressed swiftly. All official permits related to the project have been acquired, and earthwork at the Anttila substation has been launched.
“The planning of all building work and the type tests of the cable will be launched next. The building work within the project will be completed in stages so that the cable will be laid at the bottom of the sea in the summer of 2013, and the testing of the connection will commence in the autumn of 2013. I am confident that the significant additional transmission capacity brought by the new link can be made available to the electricity market at the beginning of 2014,” says Jukka Ruusunen, President & CEO of Fingrid.
"The security of power supply must be based on well functioning electricity market. The EstLink2 connection is one of the most important infrastructure projects in the region and has positive impact on further electricity market development. After the commissioning of EstLink 2 in 2014 we will have more integrated Baltic-Nordic electricity market. EstLink 2 is a good example of well-organized co-operation between transmission system operators having a same goal - develop a well-functioning electricity market in Baltic - Nordic region, and securing the reliability of local transmission systems", says Taavi Veskimägi, the CEO of Elering.