The Algerian Energy Company (AEC) plans to investigate the building of an interconnector in order to export electricity to Italy – one of a number of proposed projects for which it is looking to raise $12.2bn.

The AEC was formed in May 2001 and is owned jointly by Algeria’s national energy and power companies, Sonatrach and Sonelgaz.

A feasibility study is to be undertaken by Italian electrical services company CESI and dependant on the outcome will be the construction of two new power plants by AEC which together would have a generating capacity of 2000 MW.

Five international developers submitted initial bids for the construction of the two plants; a 1200 MW export oriented plant at Skikda and an 800 MW facility at Arzew aimed at the domestic Algerian market.

The interconnector to Italy would be by way of a sub-sea cable via Sardinia, Sicily or Tunisia.

AEC are also considering the construction of a s $1.5bn sub-sea gas pipeline to export power to Spain.