Bosnia and Herzegovina: EPS will not buy ERS

, SEE Energy News

The initiative signed earlier this week, regarding the cooperation on hydro project on the Drina river, was misinterpreted as the sale of Bosnian power utility ERS to its Serbian counterpart EPS. This was said by Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic and the Member of BiH Presidency Milorad Dodik.

President Vucic said that Serbia is more interested in buying other power utilities in the region than in ERS, adding that Serbia will never do anything that would not be in the interest of the Republic of Srpska. that the acquisition in neighboring countries is primarily a political issue and, although EPS has the required funds, some countries are refusing to sell their power utilities.

Last March, Serbia and the Republic of Srpska (RS) decided to cooperate on the project for the construction of HPP Buk Bijela, besides already agreed joint development of the projects for the construction of hydropower plants Foca and Paunci on the Drina river. At the meeting of the Energy Committee of Serbia and the Republic of Srpska, it was concluded that the construction of these facilities, whose combined installed capacity exceeds 180 MW, would equally contribute to the stability of energy systems of both countries. In June 2016, the contract on the concession grant for the construction and operation of 93.52 MW HPP Buk Bijela between the RS Government and the consortium which consists of power utility ERS and its subsidiary “Hidroelekrane na Drini” has been signed. The concession is granted for a period of 50 years and the estimated value of the investment is around 195 million euros. The concession includes the preparatory period of 12 months from the day of contract signing. The preparatory period includes the development of the project documentation and obtaining all necessary permits, followed by the investment of some 21.5 million euros.

So-called Upper Drina project consists of HPP Buk Bijela, HPP Foca, HPP Paunci and HPP Sutjeska. According to original plans, overall power output of all four HPPs should be 238 MW, while annual electricity generation should reach 800 GWh (HPP Buk Bijela – 115 MW, HPP Foca – 52 MW, HPP Paunci – 36 MW and HPP Sutjeska – 35 MW). According to the studies, two HPPs on Drina river should be built in 5 and 6 years, while overall investment in the construction of all four HPPs would reach 460 million euros.