First Germany-UK interconnector reaches financial close

July 22, 2022
The NeuConnect project—a new energy link between two of Europe’s largest energy markets—reached financial close, paving the way for work to start later this year on the first direct link between the UK and German energy markets.

Offshore staff

LONDON  The £2.4 billion (€2.8 billion) NeuConnect projecta new energy link between two of Europe’s largest energy marketsreached financial close July 21, paving the way for work to start later this year on the first direct link between the UK and German energy markets, according to a recentNeuConnect Interconnector news release.

Led by global investors Meridiam (France), Allianz Capital Partners on behalf of Allianz insurance companies (Germany) and Kansai Electric Power (Japan), NeuConnect is a privately financed interconnector. The project reached financial close with a consortium of more than 20 national and international banks and financial institutions including the UK Infrastructure Bank, European Investment Bank and Japan Bank for International Cooperation.

With financial close now reached and a series of major contracts recently awarded, NeuConnect will begin early works later this year on what will become one of the world’s largest interconnector projects at 725 km in length. NeuConnect will be operational by 2028,

NeuConnect will form an "invisible energy highway" with subsea cables allowing up to 1.4 GW of electricity to flow in either direction between the UK and Germany, enough to power up to 1.5 million homes over the life of the project. It will help to deliver a more secure and resilient energy supply, with independent analysis showing the project will create more than £1.7 billion in UK consumer benefits over 25 years

By integrating renewable energy sources in the UK and Germany, independent analysis shows that the project could deliver a net reduction in carbon emissions of more than13 MtCO2 over 25 years.

Along with creating an important new piece of energy infrastructure, NeuConnect will represent an important symbolic link between the British and German economies.

Miguel Berger, German Ambassador to the UK, said, “With 1.4 GW capacity and £2.4 billion of private investment, NeuConnect is the single largest Anglo-German infrastructure project. It will boost direct trade between our countries and provide a secure source of cheap renewable energy.”

The NeuConnect interconnector will see two new substations built on the Isle of Grain in Kent, England and the Wilhelmshaven region in Lower Saxonia, northern Germany, connected by more than 700 km of subsea cables traveling through British, Dutch and German waters. Work will start on site in the UK and Germany later this year, with major construction to lay subsea cables and build substations starting in 2023.

Following significant market interest in NeuConnect’s procurement program, a series of key contracts were awarded in March and April 2022:

  • The contract to design, manufacture, install, test and commission the 725-km interconnector has been awarded to Prysmian Group;
  • The contract to design and build two converter stations in the UK and Germany has been awarded to Siemens Energy; and
  • An Arup-Fichtner joint venture has been appointed to provide project and commercial management; HSEQ management; and consenting oversight across both the onshore and offshore elements of the project.