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Medgrid to Study Mediterranean Power Grid for Solar Energy

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Dec. 10 (Bloomberg) -- A group of utilities, grid operators and equipment makers plans to study developing a network spanning the Mediterranean Sea to link Europe to North African solar-energy projects.

Medgrid, to based in Paris, will carry out feasibility studies during three years for a grid that may start importing electricity to Europe by 2020, it said today in a statement.

The 20-shareholder company, created yesterday, is a “major step” toward plans to develop 20 gigawatts of mostly solar renewable energy by 2020 in North African and eastern Mediterranean countries, a quarter of which will be exported to Europe, according to the statement.

Medgrid’s mostly European 21 partners include Abengoa SA, Alstom SA, Areva SA, Electricite de France SA, GDF Suez SA, Prysmian, Red Electrica Corp. SA, Siemens AG, Taqa Arabia and Terna SA.

More than 30 European companies have joined the Desertec Industrial Initiative, which seeks to connect Europe to solar power in the Sahara through high-voltage transmission cables.

To contact the reporter on this story: Tara Patel in Paris at tpatel2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Will Kennedy at wkennedy3@bloomberg.net