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Sep 28, 2007 14:14 EEST
September 28 (SeeNews) - The European Investment Bank (EIB) will lend Slovenia a total of 393 million euro ($557 million) in three loans to finance energy projects in the Alpine country, the bank said.
“I very much welcome the signature of the projects which will help to secure and diversify the energy supply in Slovenia and make a positive contribution towards meeting increased energy demand,” Philippe Maystadt, EIB President, said in a statement issued late on Thursday.
A loan of 350 million euro will be provided for the modernisation and efficiency increase of electricity generation from lignite, a major Slovenian fuel resource. This project covers the design, construction and commissioning of a new 600 megawatt (MW) steam turbine power plant in Sostanj, central Slovenia. The power generation unit will replace 410 MW of existing lignite-fired capacity.
EIB will also support with an additional 13 million euro loan the completion of the construction and operation of the first pumped-storage power plant located on the Soca River. The project will decrease Slovenia’s dependence on fossil fuels and help the country to meet its commitments with respect to reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. The current loan will increase the EIB financing of this project to 56 million euro.
Another EIB loan of 30 million euro will go to financing various small and medium sized investments with environmental benefits related to the reduction of air and water pollution, including greenhouse gases.
Since the beginning of 2006, the EIB has provided loans in excess of six billion euro for energy investment projects within the European Union (EU). Slovenia joined the bloc in 2004.
($ = 0.71 euro)
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