EBRD honours sustainable energy projects in Croatia and the Western Balkans

By Axel  Reiserer

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EBRD honours sustainable energy projects in Croatia and the Western Balkans

9 projects financed under the Western Balkans Sustainable Energy Finance Facility receive recognition

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is promoting energy efficiency and renewable energy in Croatia’s capital Zagreb by recognising nine outstanding projects financed under the Western Balkans Sustainable Energy Finance Facility II (WeBSEFF II).

The 2015 Sustainable Energy Excellence Awards ceremony hosted by the EBRD took place on 22 October at the Hotel Esplanade Zagreb. Outstanding investments promoting energy efficiency and low carbon technologies in the commercial, residential and municipal sectors were recognised at the event, attended by local authorities, international institutions, the diplomatic community as well as EBRD partner banks and local companies.

The prizes awarded in the following nine categories were:

1. Energy efficiency in the public sector – The awarded project was by the company Brod-plin, Croatia. The project was financed through WeBSEFF by Zagrebacka banka, Croatia;

2. Successful use of renewable energy in the public sector – The awarded project was by the company IEE, Bosnia and Herzegovina. The project was financed through WeBSEFF by UniCredit Bank, Bosnia and Herzegovina;

3. Utilisation of advanced technology in the production process for the improvement of energy efficiency – The awarded project was by the company Krupa-kabine, Bosnia and Herzegovina. The project was financed through WeBSEFF by Raiffeisen Bank, Bosnia and Herzegovina;

4. Improvement of energy efficiency in the production process for the better protection of the environment – The awarded project was by the company Kiro Dandaro, FYR Macedonia. The project was financed through WeBSEFF by Ohridska banka, FYR Macedonia;

5. Improvement of the production process to enable energy savings and scrap reduction – The awarded project was by the company FMB, Serbia. The project was financed through WeBSEFF by Banca Intesa,Serbia;

6. Improvement of energy efficiency in agricultural production – The awarded project was by the agricultural entity Radanov Miodrag, Serbia. The project was financed through WeBSEFF by Komercijalna banka,Serbia;

7. Energy efficiency refurbishment of business buildings – The awarded project was by the company Alkaloid, FYR Macedonia. The project was financed through WeBSEFF by NLB Tutunska banka, FYR Macedonia;

8. Energy efficiency refurbishment of the residential building – the awarded project was from the company Komuscak, Croatia. The project was financed through WeBSEFF by Provredna banka Zagreb, Croatia;

9. ESCO – the awarded project was from the company Sense Esco, Croatia. The project was financed through WeBSEFF by Erste Bank, Croatia.

The EBRD also awarded Sustainable Energy Excellence Awards to all nine partner banks, in recognition of their work in bringing sustainable energy financing opportunities to their customers.

Under WeBSEFF II, the EBRD is supporting a regional approach to sustainable use and conservation of energy. The €92 million framework is providing longer-term financing to local banks in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, FYR Macedonia and Serbia to on-lend for eligible projects and is complemented by technical assistance and investment grants funded by the European Union.

So far, banks have on-lent €42.27 million of EBRD finance to 162 companies for financing energy efficiency improvements with a combined value of about € 52.27 million.

These projects led to annual total equivalent primary energy savings of 386.7 GWh/y and of 205,028 tonnes of CO2/y. These are  equivalent of the buildings energy consumption of the city of about 25,000 inhabitants for an entire year, and  the equivalent of taking 30,000 passenger cars off the roads for a year.

The EBRD has recently adopted a new approach to scale up its financing to tackle the climate change over the next four years ahead the COP21 in Paris. Under the new Green Economy Transition approach, the Bank is aiming to step up its green financing to around €18 billion or 40 per cent of its total annual investment by 2020.

“Supporting sustainable energy investments is a key element of EBRD’s strategy and we are encouraged by the commitment of the countries to improve energy efficiency in a strong partnership with the EBRD and the EU. We firmly believe that this is also a step towards sustainable growth” said Vedrana Jelusic Kasic, Director, EBRD Croatia.

“We are pleased to see that WeBSEFF is contributing to the regional integration of the financial sector of the countries in the region. We have strong partners in the financial sector across the Western Balkans and we are pleased to note their commitment to sustainable energy investments as part of their business strategy”, said Henry Russell, EBRD Director, Financial Institutions for Western Balkans, Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine.

WeBSEFF II is part of the Regional Energy Efficiency Programme for the Western Balkans, a joint initiative of the Western Balkans Investment Framework (WBIF) and the EBRD. Under this umbrella, the European Union is supporting WeBSEFF II with €11.5 million in grant funds for technical assistance and investment incentives for the borrowers, who can benefit from consultation and advice such as free energy audits.

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