January 31, 2019
Elektroprivreda Republike Srpske (ERS), the power utility of Republika Srpska (RS), an entity of Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), will set up a concession company shortly to enter into contractual relations with Serbia’s public power utility Elektroprivreda Srbije (EPS) with the aim of the RS and Serbia building the Foča and Paunci hydropower plants (HPP), said RS Minister of Energy and Mining Petar Đokić.
“Relations within the joint venture would be regulated at a later time, with the RS and Serbia holding stakes. In the first phase of the project, Serbia should have 51% and the RS 49% in the two HPPs,” said Đokić following the recently held session of the RS-Serbia energy committee.
The RS government previously awarded concessions to ERS for the project to build HPPs Foča and Paunci on the upper course of the Drina river, with a total value of EUR 245 million.
Đokić said following the energy committee session in Banja Luka, which he chaired together with Serbian Minister of Mining and Energy Aleksandar Antić, that HPP Foča should have an installed capacity of around 44.15 MW and HPP Paunci an installed capacity of 43.25 MW.
According to Antić, Serbia and the RS are financially strong enough to jointly carry out the first step concerning the project, after which they would secure financing to complete the project.
Presidency of BiH Chairman Milorad Dodik said earlier that BiH’s consent will not be required for the construction of HPPs Foča and Paunci because that section of the Drina river merely runs through Republika Srpska.
Tendering for HPP Buk Bijela could be launched soon
Đokić said that the project to build HPPs Foča and Paunci represents a continuation of activities launched earlier for the construction of HPP Buk Bijela.
“We are prepared for tendering to be launched very quickly for the selection of a partner to help build the HPP,” said Đokić.
He also said that the project to build HPPs Foča and Paunci is not linked to ERS’ plans to increase its capital by 10%, adding that the planned capital boost refers more to the adoption of a new law on electricity to regulate the issue of unbundling power supply and distribution.