Renewables

Belgrade Energy Forum 2024 – leaders of energy transition to meet in Belgrade on May 13-14

Belgrade Energy Forum 2024

Photo: Balkan Green Energy News

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February 28, 2024

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Published:

February 28, 2024

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Belgrade Energy Forum 2024 will host the leaders of the sustainable energy transition in Southeast Europe on May 13 and 14, bringing together key regional and worldwide players that governments and countries are counting on in the process. If you see the role of your organization or company in the energy transition as important and leading, and you count on this region’s market, the BEF 2024 is the place to be and the place where you are welcome!

Belgrade Energy Forum is a regional energy conference organized by Southeast Europe’s leading energy news portal, Balkan Green Energy News.

The agenda of the conference, taking place at Belgrade’s Crowne Plaza Hotel, includes an opening ceremony, eight panel discussions, on-stage interviews, and presentations. The venue will also include an exhibition area with stands.

On Monday evening, participants can enjoy a party at one of Belgrade’s clubs, for which the capital of Serbia is widely known.

Ministry of Mining and Energy institutionally supports BEF 2024

The Ministry of Mining and Energy of the Republic of Serbia has traditionally been the institutional sponsor of the Belgrade Energy Forum.

Minister of Mining and Energy in the Government of Serbia, Dubravka Đedović Handanović, opened Belgrade Energy Forum 2023
Minister of Mining and Energy in the Government of Serbia, Dubravka Đedović Handanović, opened Belgrade Energy Forum 2023

Institutional partners from the commercial sector are power exchanges SEEPEX and Adex Group, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia, the Nordic Business Alliance, Confindustria Serbia, Advantage Austria, Slovenački poslovni klub, Foreign Investors Council.

Major players in renewable energy projects sponsor the conference

The diamond sponsor and the main sponsor of BEF 2024 is a consortium of companies, UGT Renewables and Hyundai Engineering.

Recently, a consortium set up by Hyundai Engineering, Hyundai ENG America and UGT Renewables has been selected as the strategic partner of the Government of Serbia for the construction of 1 GW of self-balanced solar power plants with 200 MW of batteries.

In Montenegro, UGT Renewables signed an agreement in 2022 on the joint development of renewable energy and energy storage projects with state-owned power utility Elektroprivreda Crne Gore (EPCG). Montenegro’s new government recently affirmed its support for the partnership.

UGT Renewables – Hyundai Engineering is the diamond sponsor, and CWP is the silver sponsor

UGT Renewables has established a strategic partnership with South Korea-based Hyundai Engineering for Europe and Central Asia. Projects implemented by UGT’s sister companies, Sun Africa and Sun Arabia, complete the portfolio of this major player based in the United States.

As the silver sponsor, CWP Europe, part of CWP Global, reaffirms its commitment to the Southeast European market and its long-term cooperation with the organizer.

A renowned innovator in renewable energy, CWP is currently developing more than 6 GW of projects in Southeast Europe, which confirms its role as a leader in the region’s energy transition.

Investment company Alcazar Energy is also attending the conference as a sponsor. It focuses on renewable energy projects with great significance in some of the most dynamic markets in the world. Co-Founder and Managing Partner Daniel Calderon will participate in the conference as a panelist and lead a team of six.

Akuo Energy is among the sponsors as well. It is an important global player developing green power plants. The company has significant projects in the Western Balkan region but in Greece, too. At a panel discussion, it will be represented by Alexandra Sombsthay, its VP Europe and Vice-President of SolarPower Europe.

CMS resides in top echelon of Chambers and Partners list

Among the sponsors of this year’s conference is law firm CMS Reich-Rohrwig Hainz, with headquarters in Vienna and a network of 13 offices in Southeastern and Central Europe. Lawyers from Croatia, Bulgaria and Serbia will hold a presentation on the second day of this year’s conference of the regulatory framework for energy storage facilities and batteries in Southeastern Europe.

In Central and Eastern Europe, CMS is in band 1 in 19 categories including projects and energy in the prestigious Chambers and Partners ranking. The law firm also has 23 individual partners in the top echelon.

Germany-based ProCredit Bank is a silver sponsor of the conference. Through the partnership with our news website and the conference, it is is affirming its dedication to promoting sustainable development and innovation in the region of Southeastern and Eastern Europe. In addition to its support to small and medium-sized enterprises, the bank in Germany and all the banks within this strong financial group are also financing projects for energy from renewable sources, providing support to the region’s energy transition.

Rimac Technology, part of Rimac Group, is a silver sponsor as well. It will arrive at the conference with its battery energy storage system. The solution was developed by the Rimac Energy division. It is headquartered in Zagreb, Croatia, and has an office in Witney, Oxfordshire, in the United Kingdom.

EFT Group, electricity trader and investor in energy capacities, is a bronze sponsor. It is present in day-ahead and interday markets as well as in the forward market. The company is active in 14 European power exchanges. In the Balkans region it develops new renewable energy production capacities. It delivers aroung 18 TWh of electricity to its buyers per year.

Fortis Energy, a Turkish company developing and operating renewable electricity plants, is an exhibitor this year. Its portfolio comprises solar and biogas facilities. It also implements projects under the turnkey model or EPC. The company plans to materialize a total of 1,000 MW in renewable energy projects in the Balkans market.

Among the exhibitors is Schletter from Germany. It is one of the leading producers of solar mounting systems. It develops and manufactures mounting solutions made of aluminium and steel for solar parks, flat roofs and pitched roofs.

The company SolaX Power will exhibit at Belgrade Energy Forum as well. SolaX Power has been active for more than a decade now and it already developed a strong presence in Europe. According to the company, it is a leading provider of energy storage solutions with wide applications: in the residential, commercial and industrial sectors as well as in the utility-scale solar power plant segment. By coming to BEF 2024, SolaX Power affirmed its dedication to the Balkans market.

One of this year’s friends of the conference is MFG, a company in Serbia active in the development of wind parks and providing consulting services in the renewables segment.

Another friend is faria renewables from Greece, too. It’s a strong corporate partnership between FARIA Group and the Capenergie 5 fund. The company based in Thessaloniki develops and operates renewable energy projects in the segments of offshore and onshore wind power plants, solar and hybrid facilities, energy storage and green hydrogen.

Lugos Renewables is a friend of the conference this year again. It is headquartered in Hungary, where it is a leading solar power plant developer. It currently develops projects in six countries.

Who will take part in BEF 2024

Over 400 participants from around the region, Europe, and the world are expected to attend the conference: energy ministers and their teams, Director of the Energy Community Secretariat Artur Lorkowski with his closest associates, representatives of  the leading European energy associations, such as Energy Traders Europe (formerly EFET), WindEurope and SolarPower Europe.

Excellent networking opportunities at Belgrade Energy Forum - join and connect with the leaders of energy transition in Southeast Europe
Excellent networking opportunities at Belgrade Energy Forum – join and connect with the leaders of energy transition in Southeast Europe

Among the companies that are expected to join the conference are those developing onshore and offshore wind farms and solar power plants, investors, transmission and distribution system operators, electricity traders, law firms, leading consultancies on energy and climate, manufacturers of technology, equipment and software solutions, as well as donors, embassies, international financial institutions and commercial banks.

Up-to-the-minute energy topics will be discussed at BEF 2024

The eight panels, featuring leading people from the energy sector in Southeast Europe, are expected to see lively discussions.

One of the conference participants is Marc Crandall, founder and CEO of CWP Global and one of the global pioneers in renewable energy.

Marc will speak about the main trends in developing renewable energy sources and hydrogen and scenarios for decarbonizing energy, industry, and business on the path to climate neutrality.

  • Panel 1: High-level ministerial panel on strategies for advancing energy transition in SEE

The governments of Southeast European countries are stepping up efforts to achieve energy and climate goals. As reports of gigawatts of new renewable energy capacity, chiefly wind and solar, are coming in one after another at the speed of light, as Balkan Green Energy News reports daily, significant gas infrastructure projects are also being developed.

At the same time, we are witnessing a nuclear energy revival. Several new conventional nuclear power plants are currently being planned in the region, while small modular reactors are discussed more often.

The priorities of governments from the region regarding the Green Agenda, decarbonization, and energy security will be discussed by the ministers of energy at the first panel.

Francesco Sassi, a researcher at the energy security section of the Observatory of International Politics of the Italian Parliament and Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, will moderate the panel.

BEF exhibition and networking area is a perfect spot to present you product, service or project
The BEF 2024 exhibition and networking area is a perfect spot to present your product, service or project
  • Panel 2: Decarbonizing industry and business in response to Green Agenda and carbon pricing

The recently adopted Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism, or CBAM, has sparked much debate among affected companies and their European partners. The mechanism further accelerates the decarbonization of industry, which was inevitable even without it. There is no doubt that the impact of CBAM on exports to EU countries, especially electricity, will be discussed at several panels during the two-day conference

  • Panel 3: What we should do now to secure a timely and meaningful carbon-neutral future

What technologies, smart solutions, and energy sources the region can count on in the coming years? What is the scope of investments needed in renewable energy sources to provide timely energy transition, reach energy and climate goals? What are the plans of big investors and what kind of projects are they interested in?

Are financial mechanisms ready, and are they matching the speed at which technologies and development models are changing? Many questions will be discussed at this exciting panel, which will bring together some of the leading names in the energy transition in the region and Europe.

  • Panel 4: Accelerating transition roadmap of SEE power utilities

At the panel on power utilities, top people at these companies will talk about how they are implementing the transformation, what capacities will replace the elderly coal-fired power plants, and what key projects will be executed in the next five to ten years.

Regarding upcoming investments, the panel will also discuss ongoing and planned strategic partnerships between power utilities and major global players. The chief executives of leading power companies from the Western Balkans will also talk about the impact of the EU’s carbon border tax (CBAM) on business.

  • Panel 5: Solutions on the horizon to overcome grid challenges

Grids will play a vital role in the power systems of the future and are often described as a stumbling block to the integration of renewable energy sources and, consequently, the energy transition’s success.

According to recent research, USD 3.1 trillion needs to be invested in transmission and distribution infrastructure by 2030 to limit global warming to 1.8 degrees Celsius. This involves building an additional 18 million kilometres of the power grid network.

What transmission system operators and experts think of this problem and where they see possible solutions we will find out at the panel that deals with grids, their development, and connection issues.

  • Panel 6: Accelerating battery storage in South Eastern Europe: Challenges, Solutions, Outlook

Energy storage capacity is essential to integrating renewable energy sources, and BEF 2024 will dedicate an entire panel to this topic. It will bring together representatives of technology manufacturers, investors, financial institutions, and transmission system operators. Panos Kefalas, Senior Associate for Southeast Europe at Aurora Energy Research, will moderate the panel.

Within the battery storage thematic block, lawyers from CMS Reich-Rohrwig Hainz law office, with headquarters in Vienna and ten offices across the region, will present the regulatory framework for the batteries and storage capacities in the SEE, as the first and most important step for investors in project development.

  • Panel 7: New electricity market design – get ready!

The Green Agenda, the energy transition, and the energy crisis have brought about significant and rapid changes in the electricity market, leading to the improvement and adaptation of the existing market model.

The topics that will be discussed include increasing the value of cross-zonal capacity to meet the needs of the market, defining new bidding zones, potential obstacles that CBAM brings to the region and market players, the occurrence of negative prices, the integration of the Southeast European market into the EU’s single market, the potential consequences of large-scale renewables integration in the region without prior market integration, as well as new market entrants and products.

By answering all questions, the experts will also try to bring this complex issue closer to the audience and explain what awaits us in the immediate future. The panel will be moderated by Dejan Stojčevski, Chief Operating Officer of SEEPEX.

  • Panel 8: Are we meeting renewable energy targets as planned?

Another important panel is the one on renewable energy projects in the Western Balkans and Southeast Europe and their market opportunities. The panel will discuss auctions, different types of power purchase agreements (PPAs), hedging, aggregation, and financing.

 

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