Turkey’s trial interconnection with the European electricity grid is expected to be extended by up to another year to allow the grid operator TEIAS to complete a series of issues related to technical, security and data flow management, the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity (ENTSO-E) said in a statement on Thursday (19th September).
TEIAS will be asked to operate the system in line with the EU’s third energy package, which mandates transparent data flows.
The TSO will also have to improve infrastructure, carry out technical work that includes the completion of voltage converters in southeastern Turkey and implement online security analysis.
The requirements will be included in a long-term binding contract that TEIAS is due to sign next month.
“A final decision on permanent synchronous operation will then be taken,” ENTSO-E, the authority supervising the interconnection, said in the statement.
“To achieve these steps under the clearest possible contractual framework, a formal one-year extension of the trial operation is proposed. ENTSO-E has written to TEIAS formally outlining these steps,” ENTSO-E said.
A spokeswoman from ENTSO-E said this one-year extension could be reduced to six months.
ENTSO-E, the authority supervising the interconnection, said that a final self-risk assessment of compliance with standards outlined by ENTSO-E’s regional group for continental Europe will be submitted at a meeting on 16 October.
Turkey started its trial interconnection with the European system in September 2010.
The trial period included three stages, two of which were completed successfully in June 2011.
The third and final phase opened up limited commercial electricity flows between Turkey and Bulgaria and Greece, allowing companies active in the region to trade on the borders.
Earlier this summer TEIAS increased the border capacity following positive results reported during the third stage of the trial period (see EDEM 23 July 2013).
Before the increase, Turkey imported 400MW from Bulgaria and Greece, but electricity imports increased to 550MW this summer. Conversely, Turkey raised its exports to Bulgaria and Greece from 300MW to 412MW.
Bulgaria accounts for two thirds of the import and export flows, and Greece for one third.
Once Turkey completes the trial interconnection, flows could be increased to 1GW, according to a scenario by TEIAS.
Traders active in the region have repeatedly praised TEIAS for its transparent operations and management of monthly cross-border auctions with Bulgaria and Greece, asking for Turkey’s interconnections with other non-EU countries to apply the same and transparent rules (see EDEM 16 November 2012).
(THE ICIS HEREN REPORTS - EDEM 17182 / 19 September 2013)