Slovenia shows interest in Montenegro-Italy undersea power line

PODGORICA (Montenegro), April 11 (SeeNews) – Montenegro’s government said Slovenia has expressed interest in using part of the capacity of the undersea high-voltage power line that would link Montenegro to Italy.

Slovenia has shown interest in expanding its cooperation with Montenegro by using part of the capacity of the future power line to Italy as well as the hydropower potential of the Moraca and Komarnica rivers in Montenegro, the government said in a statement on Monday.

The projects were presented to a Slovenian government delegation led by infrastructure minister Peter Gaspersic and finance minister Mateja Vranicar Erman, the government said.

According to information posted on the government’s website, four hydropower plants are planned to be built on the Moraca river. They will have a combined installed capacity of 238 MW and an estimated annual electricity output of 694 GWh. The anticipated construction period of all four facilities is six years, while the total estimated cost is 540 million euro ($611.1 million).

The Montenegrin government signed in 2015 a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Slovenia and Turkey on implementing the Moraca river hydropower project. Under the terms of the contract, the signatories inform each other on a regular basis of the status and progress of the arrangements related to the possible design and construction of the Moraca river hydropower plants.

In October, the Montenegrin government said it signed a cooperation deal with Chinese company Norinco International Corporation Ltd which will define the prerequisites for the implementation of major projects in the field of hydropower, including the construction of hydropower plants on the rivers Moraca and Komarnica.

Back then, Montenegrin state-run power grid operator Elektroprivreda Crne Gore (EPCG) said it plans to invest 240 million euro in the construction of a 170 MW hydropower plant on the Komarnica river.

Italian electricity transmission system operator Terna said in February it has completed the laying of the undersea section of the power transmission line to Montenegro. The entire project, valued at 800 million euro ($847.3 million), is expected to be completed by the end of 2017. The undersea connection between Italy and Montenegro represents a link of the 400 kV Trans-Balkan Electricity Corridor, connecting Serbia, Bosnia and Montenegro to the European Union grid.

During the start of the project, in 2013, Terna explained that the laying of the undersea power line is part of a bigger strategy for creating a Mediterranean power hub by strengthening ties with Switzerland, Slovenia and France.

($ = 0.944167 euro)

Source: Montenegro Government

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