EBRD approves loan for two Albanian hydropower projects

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has announced it will fund a pair of small hydropower plants with a US$7.73 million loan.

The recipient -- the Hydro Power Plant of Korca sh.p.k. -- will use the money to finance thw Verbe-Selce 1 and 2, which, when completed, will provide eastern Albania with an additional 5 MW of power.

The loan is part of EBRD's Western Balkans Sustainable Energy Direct Financing Facility (WeBSEDFF).

"The construction of the Verbe-Selce SHPP Cascade reaffirms the EBRD’s great interest in renewable energy in Albania," says Fabio Serri, head of the EBRD's Resident Office in Albania. "This project will help improve security of energy supply and clearly demonstrates that the sector has the potential to become a key driver in the development of the Albanian economy."

Hydro Power Plant of Korca is owned in part by Italy-based Fidia Ambiente and EdilEurope srl, along with Albania's Xhemi sh.p.k.

"The financial support of the EBRD represents an important endorsement and recognition of the quality of our investment and our commitment in the region," says EdilEurop owner Claudio Barbano. "This project will set an excellent example of financially viable investments in renewables, we look forward to more projects in the Balkan region."

EBRD says it has now invested more than $906 million into the country's economy, including $3.9 million for the construction of the 5.1-MW Cerruje 1 and 2 hydropower projects in December 2011.

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