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New Power Alliance Boosts Balkan Energy

In a forward-looking move that promises to reshape the energy landscape of the Balkans, the heads of Elektroprivreda Republike Srpske (ERS) and Elektroprivreda Crne Gore (EPCG) have floated the idea of a joint venture that could herald cheaper electricity prices for citizens across the region

With the proposed company’s headquarters in Trebinje, this ambitious partnership aims at launching new investments in energy projects within both Republic Srpska and Montenegro.

Luka Petrović, the General Director of ERS, laid out the blueprint of this collaboration, where EPCG would hold a majority stake of 51%, leaving ERS with a 49% share. The initiative is designed to leverage mutual interests and resources, focusing on untapped potential areas such as the utilization of Bilećko Lake’s waters, the construction of solar power plants on its banks, and the revitalization of the high Buk Bijela project for the benefit of the “Gornja Drina” hydropower system.

Petrović’s announcement highlights a significant step towards integrating energy resources and infrastructure between the two entities, potentially leading to lower energy costs for residents of both Republic Srpska and Montenegro. “This future collaboration means citizens will enjoy more affordable electricity prices. We aim to undertake joint projects, like better exploitation of Bilećko Lake, and discuss building solar plants on it, along with revitalizing ‘Buk Bijela’ which would also benefit the ‘Gornja Drina’ hydropower system,” Petrović explained to ATV.

The proposed venture also envisages benefits for Montenegro, as the large accumulation would extend into its territory without impacting the Tara River canyon. With Elektroprivreda Srbije owning a 51% stake and ERS 49% in the “Gornja Drina” project, Montenegro’s participation is seen as mutually advantageous.

However, EPCG later issued a statement to clarify that discussions with ERS are ongoing. “We must state that negotiations are still in progress. EPCG, being the country’s most crucial company, will timely inform the public about all significant aspects of its operations, including talks with ERS on this matter,” the company noted.

The talks are part of a broader strategy to find the optimal way to handle projects of mutual interest, especially those related to maximizing the energy potential of Bilećko Lake. EPCG emphasized its strategic commitment to ensuring that all its projects, whether independent or collaborative, serve Montenegro’s interests.

This budding partnership between ERS and EPCG symbolizes a new era of cooperation in the Balkan energy sector, promising not just economic benefits but also a sustainable future for the region’s power supply.

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