Republika Srpska, Knezevo, August 26 – The mini hydropower plant Zapece on the Ugar was officially commissioned on Wednesday by the Srpska Minister of Industry, Energy and Mining, Petar Djokic, Minister of Spatial Planning, civil Engineering and Ecology, Srebrenka Golic, member of the Austrian power group Kelag, Armin Wiersma, and the CEO of Ljubljana’s Interenergo, Anton Papez.
The investment is worth €14 million and the planned annual production is 14 gigawatt-hours. The installed capacity of the mini hydropower plant is approximately four megawatts.
Djokic has said that the facility carries great significance for Republika Srpska since it will increase the entity’s energy ability by producing additional amounts of electricity from renewable energy sources.
“There are 123 concessions currently active granted for the construction of energy plants in Srpska. Those are mainly hydro electricity power plants of which three are major ones. Fourteen projects are ongoing,” Djokic told reporters in Knezevo.
He added that Austria’s Kelag and its member Interenergo had so far invested around BAM50 million in the construction of the two plants, and that the third hydro power plant, Medna on the river Sana, whose installed capacity will be 5.1 megawatts, was under construction. The project is expected completed in early 2017.
“The total value of those investments will be around BAM100 million,” said Djokic, adding that Kelag is an important partner of the Srpska Government, with which it signed an agreement to extend the cooperation by another two years.
He reiterated it was very significant for Srpska to keep building such plants and having the energy sector the most important generator of the entity’s development, which can be achieved, he said, by building major energy plants such as the Stanari Thermal Power Plant, which will be commissioned for a trial run towards the end of the year.
“The government is resolved to launch the construction of the Thermal Power Plant Gacko II. Activities towards the construction of the TPP Ugljevik III have already started, while as far as the hydro energy sector is concerned, we are building the HPP Dabar and planning the construction of the HPP Buk Bijela on the Drina,” recalled Djokic.
He also stressed the importance of building wind parks, mentioning the Trusina wind park project in Nevesinje, whose installed capacity will be 49 megawatts and is expected to be commissioned in 2017.
According to the energy minister, in a few days a concession will be granted for the construction of the 48-megawatt Hrgud wind park, a project that will be implemented by the Transco Elektroprivreda Republike Srpske.
Djokic emphasised the importance of cooperation with both foreign and domestic investors, stressing the value of Elektroprivreda, which is supposed to be an implementing agency for the construction of big and small plants alike.
Industrial production in Srpska grew by 4.6 percent in relation to the same period of last year, with the energy sector marking a five-percent growth.
“Republika Srpska is a political community able to conduct difficult and complex negotiations, take on obligations and see them through. This is the most reliable sign of security for any partner working with us,” submitted Djokic.
The mini HPP Zapece opening ceremony was also attended by the Minister of Economic Relations and Regional Cooperation Zlatan Kokic, ambassadors of Austria and Slovenia and many other guests.