Montenegro: Concession plan of HPP Komarnica is the only to be awarded in 2020

, SEE Energy News

Last month, Montenegrin Minister of Economy Dragica Sekulic said that state-owned power utility EPCG will decide weather it will build HPP Komarnica by itself or in partnership, as well as weather it will finance the project by itself or through a loan. The Government of Montenegro adopted a concession plan for the use of watercourses for the construction of hydropower plants for 2020, which envisages only one concession for the whole year – HPP Komarnica.

Apart the mentioned project, the plan does not envisage awarding concessions for the construction of other small or larger HPPs. The subject of the concession is the design, construction and operation of HPP Komarnica and it will be directly awarded to power utility EPCG in which the state holds 88.66 % stake.

The Government of Montenegro has issued a proposal for the detailed spatial plan for the area where the plant should be built. The new version envisages that HPP Komarnica will have installed capacity of 170 MW, with estimated annual electricity production of 209 GWh, however with a lower elevation of the accumulation compared to the most profitable option. This means that the project will not be as cost effective as it could be, but this version is more environmentally acceptable. The cost of the project has also been increased to 246.5 million euros, significantly higher than the valuation of 185 million euros from 2018. EPCG claims that the initial cost was based on an obsolete study dating from 1988. HPP Komarnica is envisaged as a upstream step od existing HPP Piva, and will use the hydro potential of the Komarnica river, located some 45 kilometers from HPP Piva. It is estimated that the plant could be built in five years.