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EBRD supports energy infrastructure and green growth in Montenegro

By Cecilia Calatrava

  • €50 million senior loan to EPCG to support the stability of energy provision in Montenegro
  • Loan to support the country’s clean growth and decarbonisation agenda
  • Transaction under the EBRD’s Solidarity Package

The EBRD is increasing its support in response to the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic in Montenegro with a €50 million senior loan for Elektroprivreda Crne Gore (EPCG), the country’s main electricity provider.

The financial package, approved under the EBRD’s coronavirus Solidarity Package, will support the company in absorbing the challenges pvresented by the Covid-19 crisis.

The loan will help ensure the stability and resilience of the country’s energy provision while simultaneously protecting the achievements made by the Montenegrin energy sector in its ambitious clean growth and decarbonisation agenda.

The EBRD has previously financed the installation by EPCG – and its distribution subsidiary CEDIS – of smart meters throughout the power distribution grid for domestic consumers. The programme resulted in Montenegro becoming a regional leader in smart meter deployment and the first EBRD economy to meet the EU target for smart meter coverage.

To date, more than 80 per cent of customers in Montenegro already have smart meters, which translates into over 86,000 tonnes of CO2 savings per year. The company now aims to reach 85 per cent by the end of 2020. EPCG also targets the development of 300 MW of wind and solar generating capacity in the coming years.

Mr Branislav Pejovic, EPCG CFO, said: “EPCG is a key economic actor and a market leader. As a responsible company, through this financing, we want to safeguard our operations and ensure the sustainability of our planned investments. In light of ongoing uncertainty, the management will monitor the economic situation carefully and will draw on funds made available as required. Being part of the EBRD Solidarity Package is important and yet another demonstration of EPCG as a strong and trusted partner.”

Harry Boyd-Carpenter, Director of EBRD Energy for EMEA region said: “We have worked with EPCG for many years, supporting its transition to a modern, commercially oriented utility operating a smart network. We’re very pleased to have the opportunity now to provide short-term support to ensure their resilience in the face of Covid-19 impacts and in particular sustain the momentum of Montenegro’s accelerating green transition.”

The coronavirus pandemic and its economic impact present an unprecedented challenge to the regions where the EBRD invests. The Bank has rapidly stepped up its support with a response and recovery programme to help the 38 emerging economies where it invests.

The EBRD expects to dedicate the entirety of its activities to combating the economic impact of the crisis and stands ready to provide support worth €21 billion over the period 2020-21.

The EBRD is a leading investor in Montenegro. Since it began investing in Montenegro in 2006, the EBRD has financed 73 projects worth €677 million in the country.


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