Serbia energy projects

Serbia is seeking international loans and offer joint ventures and BOT (build-operate-transfer) projects in a bid to revive its energy sector and stabilise electricity, gas and fuel supplies. Energy Minister Goran Novakovic briefed an investor forum on a USD 2.0 billion worth of planned projects that aim to increase local production of electricity, refurbish two state-owned refineries and spread the use of gas as a source of heating. Serbia’s power transmission network and both refineries were heavily damaged during NATO’s 1999 bombing of Yugoslavia. Novakovic said initial financing would come from the World Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. “A major project is Kolubara, with an estimated investment of USD 790 million, $560 million of which would go to the power plant and the rest to the coalmine,” Novakovic said. Serbia had already invested USD 370 million in the 700mw plant and has held talks with Germany’s E.ON after previously having discussed the project with RWE on setting up a joint venture to complete the works. Another greenfield investment is Nikola Tesla, a 650mw plant worth USD 785 million, to become operational by 2007. Novakovic said USD 270 million was needed for a combined 450mw heat and power plant to be fed on Russian gas that could start working in 2005.

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