Representatives from Israel, Egypt, the occupied territories and Jordan will meet in Cairo in May to discuss plans to link the countries’ electricity grids.

Austria’s Verbundplan and Germany’s Lahmeyer International are carrying out a study for connecting the grids. The study, to be completed this summer, is being co-financed by the Austrian government and the EU.

In April, electricity ministers from Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Syria and Turkey will meet in Cairo to discuss the possible appointment of a consultant to carry out another study into linking the five countries’ grids by 2002. The heads of electricity authorities last met in Damascus in October (MEED 25:6:93).

Work on a link between Egypt and Jordan is already under way. Turkey’s Sezai Turkes-Feyzi Akkaya is building the transmission line linking Suez with Taba across the Sinai. The substation at the Suez end will be built by the Zurich-based ABB Asea Brown Boveri, and Germany’s Siemens has been tipped to win the contract to build the Taba substation (MEED 12:11:93, Egypt).

However, it has yet to be decided whether the link between Taba and the Jordanian port of Aqaba will be a submarine cable or a land cable. The land option would have run through Israel’s port of Eilat, and if an agreement is reached, could link Israel up to the regional grid.