The UK’s energy market regulator Office of Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem) is seeking bids from potential companies to own and operate power transmission links to two offshore wind farms.

The tender has been launched for transmissions links which run from mainland to the Galloper wind farm off the east coast of England as well as the Walney Extension wind farm in the Irish Sea.

Located 27km off the Suffolk Coast in the Thames Estuary, the 336MW Galloper offshore wind farm is scheduled to be completed in March 2018.

The 660MW Walney Extension Offshore Wind Farm is being built approximately 19km off the coast of Cumbria in the UK. It is planned to be commissioned in 2018.

Ofgem said that the tender process represents the second stage of the fifth tender round (TR5) for offshore transmission owners (OFTOs).

With an estimated value of £2bn, the fifth round will connect 2.3GW of generation capacity.

The energy market regulator will later announce the preferred bidder and award contracts for a 20-year period.

The tender launch comes after Ofgem shortlisted six bidders for for the development of transmission links for three offshore wind farms off the coasts of Norfolk and Sussex, as part of the first phase of TR5 announced earlier this month.

The three offshore wind farms include the 402MW Dudgeon, 400MW Rampion and 573MW Race Bank.

The bidders will now undergo the final invitation to tender (ITT) stage Ofgem will then announce the preferred bidder details of the each project at the completion of each ITT evaluation stage.