The transmission and distribution arm of French state-owned nuclear energy group Areva has been awarded a E50 million turnkey contract by Algerian utility Sonelgaz, to increase the capacity of its electricity transmission grid.

According to the French firm, the venture is part of the Mediterranean grid project that will link the power grids of the Maghreb and European countries.

Areva Transmission and Distribution (Areva T&D) will supply and install a 400kV air-insulated substation and will provide a telecommunications system, as well as protection and control equipment.

Philippe Romieu, Areva’s regional vice president for southern Europe and Africa, commented: We are very pleased with the trust that Sonelgaz attributes to Areva T&D’s solutions. This win will definitely speed up the development of our local resources and competences.

In 2003, Areva significantly contributed to the first steps of the Mediterranean Ring project by supplying a 400kV gas-insulated substation to interconnect Algeria’s network with Morocco’s high-voltage grid, which is known as Hassi Ameur.