Romania approved EUR 424 million in grants for the country’s transmission system operator Transelectrica to increase its capacity by 1.7 GW and upgrade the network. Croatian Transmission System Operator has received EUR 218 million for projects scheduled for completion by mid-2026.
The European Union is racing to achieve carbon neutrality by mid-century and integrate its energy market. The development of electricity transmission networks is essential in the push to deploy as much capacity from renewables as possible, given that the energy sector is the biggest source of greenhouse gas emissions.
The Romanian and Croatian transmission system operators have just received several hundred million euros for upgrades, new power lines and digitalization.
The package is the biggest that Transelectrica ever got through an EU mechanism
Romania’s Ministry of Energy approved EUR 424 million in grants from the Modernisation Fund to Transelectrica. The package was the biggest that the company ever got through a European Union mechanism and nine contracts were signed.
The projects will boost the transmission system’s capacity by nearly 1.7 GW, Transelectrica said. It has also set out to build 480 kilometers of new overhead lines, upgrade five electricity substations to 400 kV and increase the country’s interconnection capacity with Serbia and Hungary by 600 MW.
Modernisation Fund to help transform Romania’s energy infrastructure
Prime Minister Nicolae Ciucă said Romania is entitled to more than EUR 13 billion from the scheme and that the funds would be used to transform energy infrastructure and help the country achieve energy independence.
Transelectrica has earmarked EUR 2 billion in its ten-year renewable energy technology development plan.
Ten EU member countries, including Bulgaria and Croatia, are eligible to tap into the Modernisation Fund. The grants come from revenues from the auctioning of 2% of total allowances under the Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) as well as from additional carbon dioxide certificates transferred by beneficiary member states.
More public calls are underway in Romania for support from the Modernisation Fund
The Ministry of Energy has just issued public calls for support from the Modernisation Fund for the expansion and modernization of the electricity distribution grid and for high-efficiency cogeneration and district heating networks. In addition, it launched public consultations for two more programs: production of electricity from renewable sources and energy storage; and for systems for green electricity for own consumption.
Croatia’s HOPS to cover vast majority of 11 investments from resilience plan
Croatia’s Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development has approved grants of EUR 218.3 million from the National Recovery and Resilience Plan to the independent Transmission System Operator in Croatia (HOPS). The total value of the projects, due to be finished by mid-2026, is EUR 272.8 million.
The transmission system operator got grants worth 80% of its grid development plan
The Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF) is worth EUR 723 billion. It is the largest component of the NextGenerationEU (NGEU) package, which was launched alongside the regular budget to promote green economic transformation in the 27-member bloc after the coronavirus pandemic. Just over half of RRF are favorable loans, while the rest are grants.
HOPS plans to increase its renewables integration capacity, improve electricity links between the country’s south and north and replace submarine cables that connect six islands with the onshore network. The package consists of 11 projects.