Electricity

Regional utilities gather to discuss emissions trading: cooperation toward energy transition

power utilities western balkans eu ets smissions co2 cbam

Photo: EPCG/Facebook

Published

March 29, 2023

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Published:

March 29, 2023

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Top managers of five state-owned power companies from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia have discussed cooperation and the possibilities to apply jointly for funds for energy transition investments, Serbia’s utility Elektroprivreda Srbije (EPS) said.

The talks were held as part of a workshop on the introduction of an emissions trading system (ETS) and the use of dedicated funds to finance the construction of power plants to replace facilities fueled by coal.

Miroslav Tomašević, acting director of EPS, Milutin Đukanović, President of the Board of Directors of Montenegro’s Elektroprivreda Crne Gore (EPCG), Ivan Mrvaljević, executive officer of the directorate for development and engineering at EPCG, Anes Kazagić, Head of the Strategic Development Department at Elektroprivreda BiH (EPBiH), Jovica Vlatković, executive director for investments at the Republic of Srpska’s Elektroprivreda Republike Srpske (ERS), and Blagoj Gajdardžiski, director for capital investments at Elektrani na Severna Makedonija (ESM) from North Macedonia held the meeting in Belgrade.

The Republic of Srpska is one of the two entities making up Bosnia and Herzegovina, the other one being the Federation of BiH.

Tomašević: We are ready for cooperation in applying for funds and setting deadlines for a just transition

EPCG said that the workshop was held to come up with recommendations for enabling the integration of the Western Balkans into the European Union’s electricity and carbon markets, improve energy security and plan the inclusion into the EU ETS.

Miroslav Tomašević, acting director of EPS, said the company, the largest in the region, is ready to cooperate with everyone and to act together in order to find the right solutions to access funds for investments and define just deadlines for the energy transition.

Đukanović: Green energy is a development opportunity for the region

According to Milutin Đukanović, president of the EPCG Board of Directors, Montenegro can be an example to the entire region because it has introduced a national emissions trading system and set an excellent model with the country’s Eco Fund, from which the company uses funds to develop large projects.

He noted that green energy – wind, water, solar – is a development opportunity for the region. And the region should see it as its chance, as it is also in line with the strategy of the EU, Đukanović added.

The region, in his words, could achieve better results in developing solar and hydropower. Of course, the power system’s stability must be kept in mind all the time, he added.

Mrvaljević: The emissions trading system is important in order to ensure exemption from the cross-border CO2 tax

According to Ivan Mrvaljević, executive officer of the directorate for development and engineering at EPCG, all electricity companies in the region should, in cooperation with the state authorities, create the conditions for the introduction of ETS and meet the conditions to apply for an exemption from the EU’s cross-border CO2 tax system called CBAM until 2030.

The participants also agreed to prepare a letter for the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) on the issues of the Green Agenda for the Western Balkans.

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