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Greek power grid operator secures loan for undersea cable

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ATHENS (Reuters) - Greece's power grid operator IPTO said on Wednesday it had secured a loan from the European Investment Bank (EIB) to build a 1 billion euro ($1.2 billion) power link that will connect the island of Crete to the mainland grid.

The 328 kilometre underwater cable with a 1,000 megawatt capacity will be linked to another cable that Cyprus, Greece and Israel plan to build to interconnect their power grids - the so-call Euro-Asia Interconnector that will cross the Mediterranean seabed.

The EIB has agreed to extend a 200 million euro loan to IPTO with an option of an additional financing of 100 million euros under a 20-year facility, IPTO said in a statement.

IPTO already has a 200 million euro loan from Eurobank, and will also use its own and European funds for the project, which is expected to be built by 2023, it said.

(Reporting by Angeliki Koutantou. Editing by Mark Potter)