Brazil, Argentina Governments
step up studies on cross-border pipelines, power
Jan 08, 2004 (BNamericas.com via COMTEX)
The respective governments of Brazil and Argentina
have created two bi-national workgroups to study
the exchange of excess electricity between the
countries and the conclusion of the Uruguaina-Porto
Alegre pipeline, Brazil's mines and energy ministry
said in a statement.
The announcement came after the second
meeting of the bilateral energy committee since
it was created in 2003. The meetings are headed
by Brazil's mines and energy minister Dilma
Rousseff and Argentina's energy secretary Daniel
The committee aims to identify bilateral energy
projects that Brazil and Argentina can propose
and support within meetings of the Regional
Infrastructure Integration of South American
(IIRSA) group, a multinational organization
created in 2000 and coordinated by the Andean
Development Corporation (CAF), the Inter-American
Development Banks (IDB) and the Fonplata Development
"The committee concluded that energy projects
weren't getting enough prominence within IIRSA,"
a spokesperson from Brazil's mines and energy
ministry told BNamericas.
Support for projects within IIRSA is considered
an important step to help obtain financing for
The first workgroup aims to produce a study
within 60 days on the feasibility of regular
and reciprocal power exchanges between Argentina
and Brazil. Currently, the Endesa Spain-headed
Cien consortium makes cross-border power sales.
The idea now under consideration is to explore
the possibility of one country giving the other
surplus power at one particular moment and then
receiving the same amount at a later date, the
Like many neighbors, the two countries have
complementary power demand seasons: Brazilian
demand peaks November through January while
in Argentina the peak is June through August.
The second workgroup would carry out feasibility
studies for the conclusion of the 615km gas
pipeline link from border city Uruguaiana to
Brazil's Rio Grande do Sul state capital Porto
The TSB consortium of Brazil's Petrobras and
Ipiranga, Spain's Repsol-YPF, France's TotalFinaElf,
and Argentina's Techint is the likely constructor
of the US$500mn pipeline, which would transport
4.4 million cubic meters a day (mcm/d) of gas
to Porto Alegre, favoring the development of
power generation plants.
The two countries also agreed to restart studies
for the construction of the Garabi hydro project
on the Uruguay river which marks the border.
The project has been in the planning stage for
decades. Brazil's newly created research group,
the Energy Research Company (EPE) will carry
out the latest studies, Brazilian newspaper
Valor Economico reported.
Brazil also pledged to recognize the regional
importance of two Argentine projects in upcoming
IIRSA meetings: the interconnection of Argentina's
northeastern (NEA) and northwestern (NOA) power
grids, and a gas pipeline from Argentina to
Bolivia and ultimately to the Bolivia-Brazil
The NEA-NOA interconnection would allow for
the creation of a transmission corridor from
northern Chile to southern Brazil.
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