Swiss president Micheline Calmy-Rey has confirmed that the European Union and Switzerland will start discussions on November 8, 2007 regarding the linking of their power grids to secure power supplies throughout Europe, reported the Associated Press.

Ms Calmy-Rey said that the objective is to prevent a recurrence of the power blackout that hit Italy in 2003 when a storm shorted power lines in Switzerland, causing a chain reaction that affected Italy, the report revealed.

The report said that the parties plan to reach an understanding regarding power transmission fees to help electricity operators to channel extra energy to customers in another country. They also plan to align power safety standards and to agree to recognize each other’s certification system for green energy.