Green Party leader Eamon Ryan has said a new electricity interconnector between Ireland and France will bring down energy bills for households.
Mr Ryan made the claim in Paris on Friday as he witnessed the signing of the technical agreement for Celtic Interconnector by the chief executives of Eirgrid and Réseau de Transport d’Électricité (RTÉ).
Construction of the project is expected to start next year, though consumers won’t benefit until it is completed in 2027.
Mr Ryan said he did not know exactly how much energy bills would reduce due to the project, and it would depend on market prices at that time.
The project will cost €1.6 billion, with the European Commission providing €530 million and the European Investment bank another €330 million.
The remainder of the cost will be split between Eirgrid and RTÉ France.
The powerful undersea cable will have the capacity to exchange electricity capable of powering 450,000 homes.
Speaking at a business breakfast at the Irish embassy in Paris on Friday morning, Taoiseach Micheál Martin said the interconnector will bring tangible benefits to the citizens of both France and Ireland by promoting the use of renewable energy, bringing down electricity prices and helping ensure the security of energy supply.
He said: “A remarkable 575km of cable will link my home County of Cork to Finistere in Brittany to bring energy to 450,000 homes.”