The Projects of Common Interest (PCIs) are cross-border infrastructure projects which connect energy systems of European Union’s member states, which means the Trans-European Energy Networks. These PCIs aim at contributing to the achievement of EU energy and climate goals as well as EU’s energy policy, accessible financing tools, secure and sustainable energy and long-term independence from carbon-based fuels according to Paris Agreement.
Regulation (EU) 347/2013 sets the guidelines for the timely development of interoperational routes and priority zones of Trans-European Energy Networks, which are the PCI infrastructure connecting EU with one or more third countries and concerning electricity, natural gas, petroleum and carbon dioxide.
According to Article 3(4) of the Regulation, the European Commission is assigned to issue delegated acts with which the EU’s PCI list is drawn. On a biennial basis, a new PCI list is drafted. Until now, 4 PCI lists have been drafted.
In order for a project to be considered as PCI, it should prove its great impact in the energy markets and energy market integration in at least two EU member states, enhance competition in energy market and assist in the EU’s energy security by differentiating its energy sources and by contributing to EU’s energy and climate goals with the integration of RES. The selection procedure for PCIs gives priority to projects which are included in the priority corridors as defined by the Trans-European Energy Networks policy.
The candidate PCIs are proposed by the entity which is responsible for their implementation. As a next step, they are assessed by the regional groups which consist of members from the EU member states, the European Commission, the national Transmission System Operators (TSOs), the TSOs of European networks, project implementation entities, regulatory authorities and Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (ACER). ACER is responsible for the compliance assessment of electricity and natural gas projects with the PCI criteria and their added value in the European Union.
The natural gas projects concerning Greece belong either to the regional group of Southern Corridor (SGC) or to the regional group of North-South gas Interconnectors in Central-Eastern Europe (NSI East). The projects which are in Greece’s intertest included in the 4th PCI list of the EU for 2019 are the following:
- The Floating Storage Regasification Unit (FRSU) in Alexandroupoli
- The underground gas storage facility in South Kavala
- The compressor in Kipoi
- TAP Interconnector pipeline
- IGB Interconnector pipeline
- Eastmed Interconnector pipeline and the undersea part of Poseidon pipeline
- The LNG terminal station Cyprus Gas2EU