As a member of the European Union Bulgaria is entitled to secure a net amount of at least 16% of its total energy consumption from renewable energy sources (RES) by 2020. The country shows considerable endowments in alternative energy sources, such as solar and wind, while at the same time the need for diversification of its overall energy supply becomes more evident (due to the heavy dependency of the whole economy on energy resources supply from Russia and to low carbon economy legislation on an EU level).
In taking investment decisions, it is of strategic importance to consider, that a switch-in fee of 25 000 euro per MW applies for RES projects, upon signing a preliminary contract with the energy network concessioner. However, in order to support the promotion of projects in RES in Bulgaria, certain stimulus is being offered to investors. It is a national policy that energy, produced from RES, is to be entirely bought out by the energy network concessioner, on preferential prices, for a period of 25 years for projects in PV and 15 years for projects in WP.
Currently, solar energy trades for ca. 40 euro cent, which is about 10 times higher than energy, produced by hydropower plants, and 5 times higher than energy, produce by wind farms.
The sector also falls in the scope of EU funding programs in Bulgaria, including the Rural Development Program, Operational Program Competitiveness. Several financial instruments provide the opportunity of receiving up to 200 000 EUR grant for projects in renewable energy, and up to 2 000 000 EUR for projects in energy efficiency.