The Republic of Srpska has held a groundbreaking ceremony for hydropower plant Dabar, with an installed capacity of 160 MW, in the municipality of Bileća. It is the biggest of the three facilities in the planned Gornji horizonti cascade on the Trebišnjica river, which will include hydropower plants Bileća and Nevesinje.
Hydropower plant Dabar will cost around EUR 222 million to install, and 85% of the funding is provided through a loan from the Export-Import Bank of China. The facility is being built by Chinese company China Gezhouba Group Co.
Most of the funding for hydropower plant Dabar comes from China’s loan
The construction is to be completed within 46 months. The Republic of Srpska’s Prime Minister Radovan Višković has said Dabar would be one of the largest energy facilities in the Balkans, and that its 160 MW of power would ensure the future stability of the energy system.
This project, according to reports, should provide a further 500 GWh of electricity for the electric power system.
Dabar will greatly increase the share of renewable sources in electricity output
With the construction of hydropower plant Dabar, the percentage of green energy will be significantly increased, Višković said. Currently, the share of coal-fired thermal power plants is 60%, and the rest comes from hydropower, while the obligation towards the European Union is to increase the share of renewable sources to over 60%, he added.
The Gornji horizonti project is implemented by Hidroelektrane na Trebišnjici (HET), a subsidiary of state-owned power utility Elektroprivreda Republike Srpske (ERS).
The Dabar project, whose total value is EUR 338 million, but also other energy projects, will make electricity the most important product in Herzegovina, according to Petar Đokić, the entity’s minister of mining and energy.
According to earlier reports, HET, as the founder of Dabar, is required to secure over EUR 100 million towards the project, including the remaining 15% of the costs of the power plant construction, but also funding for tunnels, expropriation, loan insurance premiums, and the Republic of Srpska’s government guarantees for the loan.
The Republic of Srpska is one of the two entities making up Bosnia and Herzegovina. The other one is called the Federation of BiH. Bileća is in the country’s southeast.