EBRD and partners support residential energy efficiency in North Macedonia

By Bojana Vlajcic

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  • €2 million credit line for residential energy efficiency investments
  • Borrowers receive up to 20 per cent cashback on successful home improvements
  • GEFF supported by the EU, Austria and the Western Balkans Investment Framework

More homeowners in North Macedonia will be able to invest in domestic energy efficiency improvements, thanks to a new €2 million credit line that the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is extending to Ohridska Banka.

Ohridska Banka will lend the funds to privately owned households to invest in energy efficiency measures, such as insulation, windows, heat pumps and solar panels. On successful completion of the projects, borrowers will be eligible for up to 20 per cent cashback.

The financing is part of a larger €135 million Green Economy Financing Facility (GEFF) programme for the Western Balkans, which supports energy-efficient solutions to build a greener and sustainable economy. The programme is supported by the European Union (EU), the Western Balkans Investment Framework (WBIF) and the Austrian Federal Ministry of Finance.

Andi Aranitasi, EBRD Head of North Macedonia, said: “Supporting green investment is one of our key priorities and we are glad to step up our green activities together with donors and Ohridska Banka. GEFF has proved a highly successful vehicle for achieving these objectives and we are pleased to continue to expand this facility.”

Ambassador David Geer, Head of Delegation of the European Union said: „GEFF is a good example of the effective use of EU funds in support of green technologies for the benefit of homeowners in North Macedonia. By investing in energy efficiency now, we invest – in the longer-term – in better living standards, lower energy bills, greater comfort and lower carbon emissions. This is in line with the goals of the European Green Deal: to improve the quality of life of the current generation and to pass a healthier environment on for the generations to come.”

GEFF in North Macedonia has reached more than 2,000 households and provided loans of more than €15 million for individual projects via partner financial institutions that contributed to savings exceeding 10 million kWh of energy and a reduction of more than 4,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions per year.

The most frequently financed technologies are windows and doors, insulation and heat pumps.

GEFF is implemented under the umbrella of the Regional Energy Efficiency Programme (REEP) for the Western Balkans, funded by the EU and delivered in partnership with the Energy Community Secretariat.

To date, around 7,000 households in the Western Balkans have improved their energy efficiency through the GEFF programme, with investments in projects that contributed to a reduction of more than 10,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions per year, equivalent to removing 6,000 cars from the roads.

The EBRD is a major institutional investor in North Macedonia. To date, the Bank has invested €2.14 billion through 145 projects in the country, where it focuses on the expansion of the local private sector, the promotion of regional and international integration and the sustainable use of resources.

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