RIGA - The project to increase the capacity of the gas interconnection between Latvia and Lithuania has been successfully implemented, says an announcement by the Riga Stock Exchange, reports Nozare.lv.
The newly implemented project was primarily aimed at enhancing the capacity of the Latvia-Lithuania natural gas interconnection, ensuring a security of gas supplies in the region and closer integration of the natural gas systems of the Baltic States. The completion of the project has resulted in the enhancement of the daily gas supply capacities of the cross-border gas interconnection: in the Lithuania-Latvia direction – up to 6.48 million cubic-meters per day, and in the Latvia-Lithuania direction – up to 6.24 million cubic-meters per day.
In July 2009, Lithuanian gas supplier Lietuvos Dujos and Latvian gas supplier Latvijas Gaze submitted a joint application to the European Commission (EC) seeking financial assistance for a joint project for the enhanced bi-directional interconnection capacity between the two countries. The Final Report on the implementation of the project was submitted to the EC at the beginning of this June.
The work for the implementation of the cross-border project was carried out in the territories of both Lithuania and Latvia. The project work in Lithuania was carried out by Lietuvos Dujos, and the project work in Latvia was carried out by Latvijas Gaze.
In Latvia, the project work that was carried out comprised work for the modernization of the gas transmission system in the direction of Lithuania and modernization of the Incukalns Underground Gas Storage Facility. A new river crossing for the Riga-Vilnius pipeline was constructed beneath the River Daugava by performing a 1,300 m horizontal underground drilling, 30 m under the riverbed. The new river crossing replaced the existing gas pipeline, which was outdated and not suitable for diagnostic testing. Meanwhile, at the Incukalns Underground Gas Storage Facility, 17 wells were reconstructed to improve their safety and performance. The Incukalns Underground Gas Storage Facility is a strategic gas facility of regional importance, rendering gas storage services to Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania and Russia. It was constructed more than 40 years ago.
The total project value amounted to 29.6 million euros, of which 5.4 million euros was invested in Lithuania and 24.2 million euros was invested in Latvia. Up to 50 percent of the project cost was co-financed with funds from the European Commission’s European Energy Program for Recovery.