Nexans and Pirelli awarded a contract worth 115 million euros, the 2003 most important contract in die Energy sector

Paris, December 10, 2003  A consortium formed 50/50 by Nexans and Pirelli has been awarded a contract for realizing - for Moroccan power company L?Office National de l?Electricité and Spanish Red Electrica de España - a turn-key high voltage submarine link that will interconnect Spanish and Moroccan power grids across the Gibraltar Strait and is worth 115 million euros.

Gérard Hauser, Chairman and CEO of Nexans commented: ?This contract confirms Nexans leadership and technological excellence in the Energy Cables and Systems sector and is the most important for submarine power industry in 2003?.

Actually, the project foresees doubling current submarine power transmission link ? realized by the same consortium in 1997 ? with overall 90 kilometers of new high voltage cables. The project is very strategic for the region, since it will significantly improve interconnection between power grids of Europe and North Africa: it will therefore allow for better peak load compensations in power demand in Europe, thus preventing black-out risks.

The contract foresees the manufacturing and laying of three oil filled paper submarine power cables, among the most technologically advanced, which ? along with existing system - will transmit 1,400 MegaWatts at a voltage of 400 kiloVolts. The project will also include two telecommunication fiber optic cables ? each 30 kilometers long ? both for system control and broad band data transmission.

Nexans will manufacture and install with the cable ship Skagerrak one submarine power cable and one telecommunication cable. He will also deliver the associated terrestrial equipments. Nexans cables will be manufactured at Halden (Norway).

The project should be completed by the second half of 2005.

The project will be partially financed by European Bank of Investments (BEI) and African Bank of Development (AFDB).

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