New JV to supervise first UK-Germany subsea power link

Built environment consultancy Arup and German engineering firm Fichtner have formed a joint venture (JV) to provide project services for the NeuConnect Interconnector, the first-ever energy link between the UK and Germany.

The newly-formed JV will provide project and commercial management, SHEQ and consenting oversight.

It also includes a comprehensive multidisciplinary team delivering an owner’s engineer/client representative role for the onshore and offshore elements of the project.

Commenting on the JV, NeuConnect CEO, Arnaud Grévoz, said: “The Arup – Fichtner joint venture will be an essential partner on the NeuConnect project, helping us manage the delivery of this vital new piece of energy infrastructure.

“As one of the world’s largest interconnectors, NeuConnect will be a complex project, so the skills and expertise of Arup and Fichtner will play a crucial role in delivering the project on time, on budget and to the highest quality.”

NeuConnect’s route will run between the UK converter station located on the Isle of Grain in Kent, passing through the UK, Dutch and German waters to the landing point in Lower Saxony in Germany to connect with the converter station near Wilhelmshaven.

NeuConnect and TenneT finalised the connection agreement to secure the German grid connection point for the €1.6 billion interconnector at the end of 2021.

The project also received permits from the relevant Dutch authorities for works offshore the Netherlands.

Additionally, key contracts, valued at over £1.5 billion, for cabling and converter station works were awarded to Siemens Energy and Prysmian.

Currently, NeuConnect is on track to reach a financial close in the coming weeks, allowing works to start later this year.

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The 1.4 GW interconnector is expected to help in delivering a more resilient supply for both countries as well as a net reduction in carbon emissions of 16 MtCO2 over 25 years to support German, UK and European net-zero goals.

The interconnector is a privately financed project developed by a group of international investors that include Meridiam, Allianz Capital Partners and Kansai Electric Power.

Scheduled for commissioning in the second half of the decade, NeuConnect will be one of the world’s longest interconnectors.

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