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EPS, Seci Energia sign contract on setting up joint company

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The management of the electric power industry Elektroprivreda Srbije (EPS) and the Italian company Seci Energia signed a contract on setting up a joint company Ibar Hydroelectric Powerplants in Kraljevo on Saturday.

The contract was signed by EPS Director General Dragomir Markovic and Gaetano Maccaferri, President of the Gruppo Industriale Maccaferri, part of which is Seci Energia. Also present at the signing were Minister of Energy and Mining Petar Skundric and Italian Ambassador to Serbia Armando Varricchio.

The formation of a joint company, which will construct ten power plants on the Ibar River with a total power of 103 MW, marks the beginning of the implementation of a protocol on cooperation in the energy sector between Serbia and Italy. The total investment has been estimated at €285 million.

Skundric said that the signing of the contract is one of the key steps in the realisation of the cooperation programme between the two governments.

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He noted that the project is of a regional character since several companies from other countries will be engaged in its implementation.

The Minister voiced his expectation that the construction of the power plants on the Ibar River will commence next year, adding that this will be the first project in which public and private capital will be jointly used.

Today we begin an investment cycle important for our country’s overall economy, Skundric declared adding that the project is only 20% of what is to be realised between Serbia and Italy in this sector.

He also explained that joint projects on the middle reaches of the Drina River have also been planned in cooperation with Republika Srpska, as well as projects related to renewable energy sources.

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Varricchio stated that today, with the contract on setting up the joint company having been signed, is a great day for the partnership between the two companies, underlining that the project was contemplated by President Boris Tadic and Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi in Rome last November.

The Italian Ambassador highlighted that Serbia is an important country in the region for Italy and has the capacity to become the driving power of development and a centre for attracting foreign investment to this part of the Balkans.

Ten cascade power plants which are to be constructed on the Ibar River will produce around 420 million kilowatt hours of electricity a year. The production will be exported to Italy at favourable prices.

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