Albania: Hydropower concessions, RES developers and gov strategy for energy balances

7. March 2014. / SEE Energy News

Commission for Productive Activities , Trade and Environment held a hearing with the Albanian Association of Renewable Energy on issues that investors , domestic and foreign encounter in implementing energy projects . In total , investment in the energy sector amount to around 200 million euros , while construction of new hydro power plants has led to an increase in the output of Albania electricity export.

Present at the hearing were Mr.Vasil Gjika , Vice / Chairman of the Board of the Association , Mr. Fatbardh Çangu , board member of the association , Mr. Eugen Licia , Executive Director , Mr. Kërluku Shiny , project manager and Mr. Sunrise Qadi , expert attached to the association .

In their speeches , the representatives of the Albanian Association of Renewable Energy requested guarantees of partnership that exists in concept and contractually between the government and investors invited by the government and that , according to them , have met all the obligations stipulated in the contract .

In total , investment in the energy sector amount to around 200 million euros , while construction of new hydro power plants has led to an increase in the output of Albania , generating employment in other countries and given the fact that these are inventive conducted in remote rural areas , poverty alleviation in these areas and improve infrastructure .

Representatives of the Albanian Association of Renewable Energy expressed their support for the initiative undertaken by the Albanian government to encourage domestic and foreign investors , the potential for exploitation of water resources for electricity production , as well as for the drafting of a legal framework for support these investments . According to them this is a strategic initiative to continue making improvements , which come as a result of increased management of installed power of new sources .

They noted that investors in this sector face bureaucratic procedures and delays by administration officials for issuing various permits; problems during construction, operation problems that have to do with technical reasons, legal, financial, not caused by business, etc.. Focusing specifically on the current situation in the energy sector, the representatives of this association stressed that a good part of the manufacturing concessionaires that are significant difficulties in their bill payments by KESH delays in reimbursement of tv sh-long investment, the price of the product, is the lowest level in the region, significant problems with transmission lines and other technical issues.

In these conditions, the Albanian Association of Renewable Energy Commission urged support for Productive Activities for seriously addressing these investors all stakeholders; impact of committee for drafting a long-term strategy for energy sector development, including energy produced from renewable sources, adapting a more flexible legal qualifications and measures or incentives in this direction, based on regional best practices and knowledge and involvement of stakeholders on all issues dealing with investments in energy.

In addition, representatives of this association deputies responded to questions regarding the environmental impact of building HPP respect the rights of owners whose land is built hydro power , problems encountered during the implementation of the legislation in force , etc. .

Considering the fact that the representatives of this association stated that during these months have only had contact with senior Ministry of Energy , but not with the minister , the deputy of the Democratic Party , Mr. George Pope said it was absurd to lacked contacts with representatives of a very important sector .

” We all know how important they are to the Albanian economy investments in the energy sector , ranging from increased foreign direct investment , employment generation system , the alleviation of poverty in rural areas where investments are usually carried out for the construction of these hydro – s , improving infrastructure in these areas , etc. . What worries me is the fact and it seems absurd that a sector so important , so significant investment made over the years by your side in the Albanian economy not to have institutional contacts with the line ministry , the Ministry of Energy , ” said Democratic Party deputy , Mr. Gjergji Pope .

On his part , Chairman of the Committee on Productive Activities , Mr. . Edward Shalsi noted that problems in the energy sector are inherited and are not created recent months , and that the solution of these problems requires a development strategy to include all of the components of the power system .

” The energy system is at a critical point , precisely because of a lack of a comprehensive strategy and haphazard movement which has undergone during all these years . Dear investors today have come to the commission are just a cog in the system and certainly discordant intervention should be complete . No one can fix his chain saw in conjunction with all other links in the system. This system needs a total reform : institutional , economic , financial, administrative , ” said Mr. Shalsi .

Further, Mr. Shalsi announced that the Minister of Energy will soon be present on the commission to introduce comprehensive strategy for Albanian power system , which aims to provide serious and long-term solutions in this very important sector for the country’s economy .

Source; Serbia Energy See Desk

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