Serbian power utility future influences local energy & metal sector, Serbia missing 1400MW due to the lack of new power gen facilities, the report

3. June 2013. / News Serbia Energy

If we don’t launch a construction of new plants, we’ll become big importers of expensive electricity. Serbian energy company “Elektroprivreda Srbije” was the almost only positive part of our bad industry for the past two decades, but it has also fallen to lower economy branches, domestic firms, especially from the area of electro machine industry, have always been there at most difficult times- in the country and EPS, from the annual overhauls to capital investments. Foreigners have mostly delivered appliances and equipment and our companies were successful partners in projecting and montage.

Everything will be easier if we manage to keep a few crucial firms that had electrification of ex SFRJ at least. “Minel”, as the one of the biggest and most significant electricity companies in the ex Yu region and famous for its products all around the world, almost not exists, while “Termoelektro” and legal subjects that had come from the “Gosa” system that are actively participating in industry life of Serbia.

Russian businessman of our origin which is also active opposition politician bought it. Many companies faced bankruptcy after his management, except for factory in “Ripanj” which was turned back from privatization agency and it is currently in so called process of reconstruction without working capital and possibility to legally include in industry life of Serbia.

There are some more interests of domestic industrials to launch “Minel’s” factory of switchgears but it is in its very beginning and it has not much successful predictions, Petrovic believes and reminds that we didn’t were capable of saving the most important parts of “Minel” like Croatians managed to save “Koncar” announcing that it as the most important firm for the country strategically. Serbian Chamber of Commerce has indicated the significance of “Minel” and suggested the model of its revitalization, but no one was listening- Petrovic says. EPS can still be good and confident domestic industry employer, despite big losses and unpaid purchases. It needs to help EPS to recover in every way because only then it will be able to move others.

Electricity price is several times lower here with reference to other countries from EU and almost two times lower with reference to countries from ex Yu. This is big economy limit for EPS. It is clear that government has many problems in current social condition because we had problems with it since socialism. But nobody even then is being against high gas price. Only electricity which is the noblest energy is not equal to other types.

However, when electricity price increases for 2 to 3 eurocents per KWH, EPS will be able to recover.

If nothing changes in this direction soon, we can become huge importers of expensive electricity. Industry has spent up to 70% of produced electricity and 30% was for so called “wide consumption”. Today is the opposite. Studies show that around Serbia will lack 1.500 MW and millions of EUR and at least 6-7 years are required for construction of blocks this big. And this is under condition that we began to build them yesterday.

Covering balance

Petrovic believes that Serbia will be able to plan construction of several gas plants with “South Stream” realization. It can cover itself with renewable energy sources until then: small solar and hydro power plants, wind generators and electricity and cogeneration facilities on biomass, natural and bio gas.

Serbia has around 21% of renewable energy sources of electricity in energy balance. According to the signed contract with Energy Association of South East Europe, this percentage needs to be 27% until the end of 2020. This means that over 1.000 MW of installed power can be only in renewable energy sources until this deadline.

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