Bosnia and Herzegovina: Energy system impacted by pandemic

, SEE Energy News

The coronavirus pandemic has caused further decline of electricity consumption in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) and in 2020, electricity consumption dropped by 49.2 %, according to the report by the State Commission for Energy Regulation (DERK).

However, the report states that such a huge drop in consumption is mostly the result of the closure of the largest electricity consumer in the country – aluminium producer Aluminij, but also financial difficulties in the operation of other large industrial consumers. The drop in consumption is registered in all consumer categories, except for residential consumers.

In 2020, electricity production in BiH dropped by 4.3 % year-on-year. The difference between total production and consumption in BiH, i.e. the balance surplus in 2020 amounted to 4,061 GWh, which is 379 GWh more than in the previous year. Thus, BiH recorded the largest balance surplus in southeastern Europe and took over the primacy from Bulgaria, where, due to the application of the Emissions Trading System (EU ETS), expensive rights for greenhouse gas emissions in electricity generation are purchased.

Despite the decrease in electricity consumption, the number of disruptions of supply in BiH’s electricity system continues to rise. In 2020, a total of 563 disruptions in 400, 220 and 100 kV transmission networks were recorded. Therefore, DERK urged the relevant authorities to increase investments in transmission and distribution system.

Director of Elektroprijenos BiH Matan Zaric said that this problem is solved in neighboring Croatia and Slovenia with the installation of ballasts. He said that the investment would cost between 10 and 15 million euros, while ballasts would be installed at the most vital 400 kV nodes such as Mostar, Tuzla, Visegrad and Banja Luka.