Transmission system operator Elektromreža Srbije (EMS) has received a donation of EUR 12.8 million from the Western Balkans Investment Framework (WBIF) for section 3 of the Trans-Balkan Corridor. It is the planned double transmission line Obrenovac – Bajina Bašta.
The agreement on the allocation of investment funds worth EUR 12.8 million for the Trans-Balkan Electricity Corridor was signed by Zorana Mihajlović, Minister of Mining and Energy of Serbia, Jadranka Joksimović, Minister of European Integration, Jelena Matejić, director of EMS, and Rudiger Hartman, Director of the country office of Germany’s KfW Development Bank, the Government of Serbia said.
The Trans-Balkan Corridor is a significant project for the European Union and the region because it connects transmission systems and markets of Romania, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and Italy, as a submarine cable runs below the Adriatic Sea.
Total investment in the construction of the part of the corridor in Serbia is estimated at EUR 157 million while the total length is 321 kilometers. So far, section 1 from Pančevo to the Romanian city of Reșița has been completed, and section 2 from Kragujevac to Kraljevo is under construction.
Investment in section 3 of the Trans-Balkan Corridor amounts to EUR 58.95 million
EUR 58.95 million will be invested in section 3 of the Trans-Balkan Corridor, which is 109 kilometers long. The funds were secured through a EUR 40 million loan from KfW and a grant from the Western Balkans Investment Framework (WBIF) of EUR 12.8 million, while the remaining EUR 6.15 million came through WBIF technical assistance and from EMS’s own funds.
Jelena Matejić, Director of EMS, said the signing of the contract for the construction of the state-of-the-art high-voltage transmission line from Obrenovac to Bajina Bašta, including an increase in the voltage level in power station Bajina Bašta, is a big step in the completion of the Trans-Balkan Corridor. It is also a step closer for Serbia to become a key energy hub of this part of Europe, she said.
The Trans-Balkan Corridor will deliver stability on the electricity market not only in Serbia but also in the region
Zorana Mihajlović, Minister of Mining and Energy, said that now only section 4, from Bajina Bašta to the borders with Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina, remains to finish the regional project.
The Trans-Balkan Corridor will deliver stability in the electricity market, not only in Serbia but also in the region, as well as in Romania, Montenegro, and Italy, she stressed, adding that Serbia’s goal is to be a transit corridor in energy as it is in transport.
Through the Western Balkans Investment Fund, Serbia received EUR 220 million
Yngve Engström, head of the sector for cooperation in the Delegation of the European Union, said that so far about EUR 220 million has been invested in Serbia through the Western Balkans Investment Framework, a facility that combines financing from member states, the EU, and international banks.
Total investments through the mechanism in the region reached EUR 5.5 billion in the sectors of transport, energy, environmental protection, and digital infrastructure, he added.