In the village of Lijeska near Tomaševo in Bijelo Polje municipality, Vrelo mini hydropower plant has been put into use. Bijelo Polje’s official website reported Ivana Hlavsová, the Czech ambassador, and Aleksandar Žurić, the municipal head, led the launching ceremony.
The power plant, located in Montenegro’s northeast, was equipped by Hydrolink SRO. The concession had been granted in June 2012 to operator Synergy DOO, majority owned by Tomáš Hájek and with a 12% stake held by KIA Montenegro. The latter enterprise was founded by Vuk Rajković, who has close family ties with prime minister Milo Đukanović, according to Vijesti newspaper. The contract’s duration is 30 years and the fee is equivalent to 6.1% of planned power generation.
„Today in Bijelo Polje we launch a facility which is the first of its kind in Montenegro,“ Žurić said at the event. „The facility is a small hydropower plant, and its significance is much bigger than its capacity in relation to energy production from renewable sources… We have another ongoing endeavour, a big hydropower plant with a suspended concession, plus four small projects with interest from investors in Bijelo Polje municipality’s territory.“
Investor Tomáš Hájek stated that all environmental requirements set out before the construction had been met. The installed capacity is 612 kW and the construction cost was EUR 1.7 million. The power plant has an energy permit for the construction of power-generating facilities and is projected for an annual output of 2.7 GWh.
After this ceremony, a cornerstone was laid for another small hydropower plant, at Bistrica river in nearby village of Majstorovina. The investment is worth EUR 7 million.